CDT Day 130: zero day in Grants – Days Inn for days
Miles hiked: 0
Total miles: still 2305
Not much going on today. Although it wasn’t the original plan, as the morning evaporated into a haze of bad motel breakfast buffet and cheap burritos, SpiceRack and I convinced ourselves that we could afford to take a zero day. And it really did feel like we needed it. I think it’s fair to say that I underestimated New Mexico in a lot of ways. The cold especially has worn me out, but the expectation of stacking big mileage days consecutively despite significantly reduced daylight hours is draining. I’m sure that my body can hike 30+ miles a day, day after day, but as soon as the sun sets… Man, it’s just hard to keep going in the cold dark. Even with full nights of sleep. Perhaps this indicates my personal degradation of the insulating factors that we humans have built between ourselves and the natural rhythm of the seasons. Lightbulbs, TVs, walls, and roofs. Not too many of these on the trail. Perhaps with shorter days we are supposed to do less. Perhaps it is as unnatural to hike past sunset or start again before sunrise as it is to sit at a desk for 8 hours a day. Maybe I’m just eating too much sugary crap and it’s harder to ignore the energy crash in the dark. I don’t know, but I miss the long days of summer. A full day in Grants and a pile of burritos will solve all my problems, right?
Alright, now for the boring town stuff…
I slept terribly. Classic town sleep. Probably dehydrated, too hot, restless. I woke up around 3am with a slight headache and a tremendous hunger. That was good news. I grabbed my uneaten crunchwrap and snuck to the bathroom so as not to disturb Spice. Ahh, Taco Bell bliss. A couple hours of sleep later, I was ready for more. The motel buffet didn’t inspire much excitement so we made sure to be at Taco Bell when it opened at 8am. All my burrito fantasies finally came true. No pancakes to get in the way today.
Back in our room, we started to do the math, and finally decided that we should take a zero day. Town chores were building up and our next few stops didn’t have much to offer as far as ‘town’ goes. Grants has everything we need. We are in the right spot.
Drama unfolded on a few episodes of Terrace House, I called my folks, and Spice firmed up the plan with a friend who is coming out to join us for a section. I ate a bucket of spinach and fooled around with some gear, patching holes and transferring shoelaces to my new kicks. The final pair. These will take me all the way to the border. Before long, it was time to eat again. This time we targeted Asian Super Buffet. The buffet was no good for us picky vegans, but we ordered about 10lbs of noodles and greasy tofu. It wasn’t great, but the broccoli stuff was alright. Should have gone to Taco Bell. Duh.
We worked off our food comas by watching It’s Always Sunny in Philidelphia in bed, surrounded by half-eaten Chinese takeout. Then I cranked up the zero day relaxation with an epsom salt bath. Rooster and Crunchberry stopped by after making it to town, but were gone by the time I flopped out of the tub of lukewarm water. Somehow it was close to midnight, which explained my tiredness, so to bed I went, feeling a little perturbed by just how little I accomplished all day. But I feel hydrated and relaxed, something I’ve struggled with in town for this entire CDT. No I didn’t solve all of my problems today, but I’m ready to face them again tomorrow. After another round at Taco Bell, of course.