Friday, May 27, 2022

Day 98: Movie thrills!

July 27: Today was a zero day! And I spent most of it online, catching up with work. Not very exciting, I know.

I did, however, walk out to Taco Bell for lunch. There was a sign across the street from the hotel that rotated between displaying the time and temperature, and at one point when I passed it, it showed a temperature of 97°F (36°C). Ugh! So glad to not have to do any hiking in this weather. It was utterly miserable walking around outside. I'm not even sure that that was the high for the day--it was just the highest temperature I saw while walking by. Definitely a good day for a zero, and definitely a good day to hang out in air-conditioned buildings.


But I didn't spend the whole day in the lovely air-conditioned buildings. I did have some tasks to do. The main task that I felt really couldn't wait was to walk over to Walmart and resupply. I spent some time figuring out the logistics for the next section of trail, and the next trail town required a hitch to get to, but there was a location on the trail where I could send a package to pick up later at South Pass City. Don't let the "city" part of the name fool you, it's not a city at all. It's basically an old ghost town, but there is a visitor center that would accept hiker packages, so by shipping food to myself there, I would save myself the time and effort of hitching into a trail town. 

It wasn't very far ahead, however, and I worried that a package I sent might not make it in time for my arrival, so I walked over to the Walmart to resupply then immediately over to the post office to mail the package ahead. Get it moving! Hopefully it'll arrive before I do and save myself a bit of time and money by not hitching into the town to resupply. *fingers crossed*

While I was over by the post office, the same woman who helped me the day before started going through her spiel about going to the Chamber of Commerce for their hiker goodie bag. She had clearly forgotten that I'd already gotten the speech the day before, but this time my pack was largely empty so I went ahead and wandered a block or two away and checked them out.

They had a bunch of stuff, mostly promoting Carbon County. Apparently they used to hand out bags of stuff to hikers but now had it all spread out on a table for people to pick and choose whatever they wanted. I guess hikers were getting stuff they didn't want. (While walking into town when I ran into Reality Check yesterday, she told me that the hiker box at their hotel was "overflowing" with buffs which she thought was weird. It was one of the items in the hiker bag. Mystery solved!)

Anyhow, I picked out some stickers to decorate my journal with. In fact, one of the items I had my mom ship me was a fresh, new journal since the one I'd been carrying from the Mexican border was nearly full. I'd put stickers on it whenever I came across free ones, so the cover was currently decorated with a large, colorful Pie Town sticker, and a smaller Bivvi Hostel sticker which I got in Breckenridge, and a "Hiked It-Liked It" sticker about Colorado. (Although, admittedly, by the time I left Colorado, I was less excited about the "Liked it" part. I was soooo tired of all those mountains! Exhausting!) I also had a cool-looking stamp from the outfitters in Leadville on the back cover.

It was a colorful journal, and I was a little disappointed to be giving it up for a plain, empty one. Now it wasn't so plain! I had new stickers for it! I hoped to continue adding more stickers further up the trail as well.

They also had small pins to attach to clothing. I used to wear an A.T. pin on my hat, but I stopped doing that when I lost the back that held the pin in place just before walking into Grants. A strong gust of wind blew my hat off, knocking off the pin. I found the pin, but I could never find the back for it that allowed it to attach to my hat. So I grabbed this pin. Maybe the back of this pin would fit the A.T. pin I still had? (Which I'd been keeping in my bounce box, so it was now in my hotel room.) When I got back to my room at the hotel, the back didn't work particularly well with the A.T. pin, so I wound up just wearing the Carbon County pin instead for the rest of my trip. The A.T. pin would just stay as part of my bounce box for the time being.

I also grabbed one of the buffs. Or rather, it was one of the fake-buffs. I call them that when they aren't official Buff merchandise, which are easily identified because they don't actually have a Buff logo on them and you'll find a seam where the tube is made. Official buffs don't have any visibly-sewn seams. But it was actually a pretty thing so I grabbed it. It was much too warm and unnecessary for the trail at the moment, however, so I planned to put it in my bounce box for later. More cushioning for my laptop as well.

I also grabbed one of the small bottles of hand sanitizer for myself. I was confident that that was a pandemic-related addition to their giveaway, but I've always carried hand sanitizer on the trail. It's not like there's plumbing to wash your hands after going to the bathroom on the trail, after all! And as it turned out, my hand sanitizer was getting low, so it was nice to restock it for free. =)

With that taken care of, I headed back to the hotel for more air-conditioning and online work.

The 1st Choice Inn was, in fact, my first choice for a room. Definitely a budget motel, but it was in my budget! =)

One thing I had done when I first got into town was Google for things to do in town. It's not like I visit Rawlins very often! If there was something interesting to see or do, now was the time to get it done!

And one thing I stumbled onto was that the town had a movie theater. And it actually appeared to be open! It was playing the newest Hollywood blockbuster, Black Widow. I can't say that I was particularly excited about the movie, but I really liked the idea of just going out to a movie. It seemed like it had been forever since I'd been to a movie theater! And while I wasn't especially excited about Black Widow, it was certainly one I'd be willing to sit through.

The movie didn't start until about sunset, though. It looked to be about a 25-minute walk from the hotel, so I headed out about a half hour before the movie was scheduled to start. Temperatures were still miserably hot outside, but I brought a light jacket with me in case I found it too cold in the air-conditioned theater. In my mind, I imagined they had air-conditioning, but even if they didn't, maybe it would be cooler on the walk back long after it was dark. Better safe than sorry! So I bought a light jacket.

I settled in for the movie, bucket of popcorn in hand and watched. It was a lot of fun. I mean, well, okay... the movie was just okay. The usual action, superhero stuff that's generally predictable and dumb, but it was just so fun to go out to a movie at all! The whole auditorium only had two other people as well. The place was practically empty! So I was also happy about the theater not being super crowded or noisy. All-in-all, I enjoyed my taste of pre-pandemic life. =)

After the movie ended, I walked back to the hotel. It was still plenty warm outside. I definitely hadn't needed the jacket, but no harm done bringing it with me.

And then I was back in the hotel for the night. I had also, by this point, decided to take an extra zero day in town. A double zero! My last double zero was way back in New Mexico! But I just couldn't help myself. The hotel was relatively cheap--and I knew that was not going to be the case in towns further up the trail. Temperatures were miserably hot outside but they were expected to cool later in the week, so I could enjoy slightly cooler weather by delaying my departure from town. Plus, it would give my food package to South Pass City an extra day to arrive. And... there was still one more thing I wanted to get done before leaving town.....

But that is a story for the next post.... ;o)

Yeah, I know the feeling. *nodding*

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