Tuesday, January 1, 2013

For Barefoot Jake

As the year drew to a close, I was looking back over my hikes and fondly reminiscing, when I noticed a comment left by a 'barefoot Jake'. It's not like I didn't see it when he first left it (it's always fun when a stranger leaves a comment...it makes me feel like I actually have fans!) but this time I noticed it in a way that made me think, "hummm, I wonder who this barefoot Jake is?" So, I clicked on his name, and it brought me to a page that told me a whole lot about barefoot Jake.

Every time I meet or read about other hikers, I am humbled. It's not like I think of myself as any sort of great outdoorsman...but when I run across a real outdoorsman, it still makes me feel like a poser. Go to his web page, and you'll see what I mean. http://www.barefootjake.com/

So anyway, on the day of New Year's Eve, the computer I had just bought off of Craigslist went belly up. I understand that buying something off of Craigslist is always going to be a bit of a crap-shoot...and I understand that a normal reaction is to be upset and disappointed when making a poor decision and wasting your money (even when you knew you were taking a risk)...and I also understand that my reaction was not exactly normal, because I went totally sideways. I'd have to do a lot of explaining about my upbringing and issues to help you appreciate this, but I'll spare you that. (your welcome ;))

I called the guy I bought the computer from, and he was nice enough to let me take it back so he could possibly fix it. On my way there, I started thinking about barefoot Jake and what he wrote about coming back to 'real life' after 30+ days hiking in the Olympic National Park:

  "Experiencing a huge shock to the system.  I find myself starring out windows watching it pour down rain.  Reflecting back to the most fulfilling year of my life.  

  Looking through 100's of pictures that I snapped along the way.  Wishing I was walking through fields of wildflowers.  With every breath; smelling wilderness in my lungs."

And I thought to myself, "Real life sucks". ;) But it occurred to me, that even though my life has in it things like computers breaking down and afternoons spent driving around mall parking lots, (another story, but NEVER try to return anything the weekend after Christmas--I know, it should have been a no-brainer) those things are not my real life. Life is blessedly so much more than computers and shopping malls; I just need to remember that. And what better way to remind myself than to go on a hike!

You don't need to strap on a backpack and plan to spend weeks on the trail to let wilderness fill your lungs; sometimes you can just pull your car over. And so, since I was making yet another trip to Anacortes, why not go back and finish some of the hike I did last week? Part of the trail went right up to the road (I found it when I followed one of the rabbit paths I talked about) and so that is where I literally did just pull the car over and start.

I realized after I posted my "Deception Pass Headlands - Rosario Head - Lighthouse Point" hike (called "Plan B") that I never actually did the Lighthouse Point part. When I looked more carefully at the map picture I took, I saw that I only did Lottie Point. There's a sign on the trail that points to Lighthouse Point that confused me the first time, because it is directed down to the beach. (I thought it must have been askew) But this time I went down to the beach and found the trail picks back up after just a little bit of shore walking.

I need to explain here that barefoot Jake had on his website that he was giving away a pair of 'minimalist' shoes to the person who posted the best picture of their bare feet. (Hopefully he doesn't have a fetish ;)) Who doesn't like a good contest? I had a lot of fun composing various shots of my feet--I even scrambled down to the shore to take one with this cool looking cave.

This is when I realized I really had to pee. I'm one of those people who really hates to pee outdoors; I'm just super paranoid someone will walk by. Guys don't get this, because they don't have to squat. But getting caught squatting is humiliating--it seems that way to me anyway. But I figured this was the perfect spot--it's off the trail and completely protected. You'll never guess what happened as soon as I had my pants down...a speedy boat (too fast for me even to think about getting my jeans back up) came roaring by (close, too!) with about 6 grown men on it. What's a girl to do but just smile and wave? I got some loud hoops and hollers--what can I say, sometimes you just gotta go with it.
Turns out there is a lighthouse...just not a very romantic one
When I got back to my car, I was completely over that stupid computer. Though, I wonder if Jake would be offended if he chooses my picture, and I end up selling the shoes so I can put the money towards getting me a computer that actually works. Just kidding, Jake...if I win, I promise to wear the shoes proudly and remember the lessons about appreciating what life really is.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Kellbell! I love reading your posts and hearing about your adventures. I especially love the tales of those embarrassing blooper moments that we hikers all experience from time to time. Thanks for sharing!