13 , 1981 Saturday From Gonzo!s Appalachian
Got up by alarm at 5:30 am, expecting to do another fifteen mile
day, but everyone said let us sleep another hour. I did, but then
still no one got up for about another half hour . No one really felt
like hiking so we decided to hike one and a half miles to Devils Fork
Gap to US 23? then from that point hitch or walk to Erwin, Tennessee.
Hitching proved difficult, so we walked on the road for several miles.
Along the way we saw a man plowing a field using an old time plow
drawn with a horse. Eventually, we got picked up by a guy in a black
pickup truck, and Bruce talked him into taking us to the Erwin post
office. We arrived there in time for Pat to get her packages. I called
Mom, but my brother, Jay, was the only one home. He told me my money
($100) was at Erwin National Bank and all I had to do was pick it
up. I went to the bank and found out that it was closed on Saturdays.
What a disappointment. Now Ill have to borrow from Chuck.
walked across the street to a joint called Bantams to
have dinner (lunch). I got out my trail food to eat while everyone
else got real food by order. Talked to a couple next to our table
who were from Michigan, I believe, and began talking about the trail.
I told them I was eating the trail food because I ran out of money
and my bad luck of banks being closed on Saturdays. The rest of
the gang received their food, and I began eating just as the couple
started to leave. Out of the blue and totally unexpected, the lady
handed me some money and said have a hamburger on us.
Great! How nice of those folks. Three dollars she gave me. I bought
a hamburger and fries, and still had a dollar left! Packed up and
went in search of a motel in town to stay. Apparently there were
only two. Just as we arrived at Morgans Motel, there was the
Australian hiker about to inquire about a room. Chuck and I had
met him at Fontana . He was trying to get a room also, but no one
would answer the door. Finally an old lady hobbled to the door and
said there were no rooms. We knew that there were rooms, but have
heard that they dont like hikers for some reason and would
not give us a room. Piss on em!
by hitch to Nolichucky Expeditions and was welcomed warmly by Mike,
the cook. $4 a night and about $2.50 per meal (supper). After getting
settled in, Chuck and I went back into town, taken by another Nolichucky
employee, Clarence, in a truck. Got groceries and washed a load
of laundry. Before returning to Nolichucky, we stopped in a bar
on Union Street near the PO while Chuck had a few beers and I a
coke. Took us a while to get a hitch from there but by using the
pleading technique, Chuck got us a ride which took us right there,
totally out of his way. Part of the deal was that we had to wait
to eat supper with the guides. A minor inconvenience, but we had
spinach lasagna, baked potatoes, bread, salad, and a slice of watermelon.
Stuffed myself! Plenty of food for $2.50. So much that I layed around
the rest of the evening cause I was so full. Slept in a bunk
with a mattress tonight. Failed to call Mom back this evening.