Monday, January 23, 2012

How am I going to do this?

So it seems that word is spreading about my little walk, which is AWESOME!  It's also starting to put the pressure on me to get planning which is also AWESOME!  The truth is though, I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing.  I'm not a long haul backpacker, I'm not a through hiker, hell I'm not even much of a camper!  So I'm stuck at ground zero of my planning stage trying to figure out what to do.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

On Adventure.

Lately I've started to question myself as to why I want to take this walk.  Mind you, I'm not wondering whether or not I'm going to do it, because I most definitely am.  I have just wondered to myself why? Why?

What would compel an otherwise sane man to decide to walk from his very comfortable home, spend countless days and nights walking across America (actually I think I just answered my own question.)

There is no adventure left in the modern world, not for ordinary people.  No more dragons to slay, damsels to rescue, lands to conquer.  At least none that are within my reach.  This walk will be my adventure and the people I meet will be my (metaphorical) damsels.  I'll probably meet a few dragons on the way as well.  I've always felt like I was apart from the modern world, as if I were born out of my intended time.  That's one of the reasons I love the SCA so much.  It gives me that fix that I need to keep going another week or month in the mundane world I was planted in.

However I need something bigger.  A quest, a dream to follow.  Something to prove my worth and manhood to the world and to myself.  I have no idea what I am to carry away from the experience but I know that it is going to change me.  It excites me to wonder what will be waiting for me and until then I will work my mind and body until they are equal to the challenge.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

New Route

There it is.  This is just a Google Map suggestion.  I may start in Boone and follow the Appalachian trail as far North as I can.

Changing my Route.

I'm changing where I'm headed.  It's my pilgrimage, I can do that.  Instead of heading to Colorado, I'm going to walk myself to Pennsic.  For those of you who don't know (who am I kidding, no one reads this) Pennsic is the biggest event of the year for most SCAdians.  Don't know what a SCAdian is...look here:

The distance is more manageable, the audience is by far closer to my demographic, and when I'm done I'll be at Pennsic baby.  Oh yeah! 

I still haven't heard anything out of Rachel's Challenge.  Of course that doesn't mean much.  They have much better things to do than worry about one crackpot wannabe hiker is doing with his Summer.  I guess I was just hoping that they would see how what I want to lined up with Rachel's vision.  I'm not sour, they are doing great things in her name without my help, I should find someone else who isn't as well known.  For those of you who don't know about Rachel's Challenge (again why do I bother, no one is reading this) check out the website here:

But anyway back to Pennsic.  I'm walking there, and along the way I am going to help as many people as possible.  Knight Errant style.  So if you are part of the SCA community, start talking me up to your friends (i.e. "Have you heard of that wack job that's walking to Pennsic, doing good deeds along the road?  How period is that?)!  Make it impossible for me to back out of this commitment. I hope to see you there at the finish line when I arrive. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Change in Plans

So it's been just about a month and I haven't heard anything out of Rachel's Challenge.  They sent me a "we're relaying your message to the right people" form letter after I sent the e-mail but other than that, nada.  They could still be passing around my e-mail thinking "what is this fool getting on about?"...but I doubt it.

I'm starting to think that Rachel has enough people telling her story and carrying on her work and that I would just be getting in their way.  So I'm starting to research some other people that I could invoke.  People who lived their lives for good, kindness, and virtue.  I am open to suggestions.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Letter to Rachel's Challenge.

I'm eagerly awaiting a response to this.

Dear RC,

I am a teacher at MCMS in Moorehead City, North Carolina.  You fine folks came to see us a few months ago.

For the last few years I have been tossing around the idea of a "pilgrimage" to one place or another.  I never knew where I would go, I just knew that I would head West.  I always planned to take my "pilgrimage" in the fashion of a "knight errant."  Knight errants were men who would travel about seeking out challenges, adventuring, righting wrongs, and doing good deeds.  Knight errants would also typically invoke the name of a lady before they committed a deed of daring do.

Experiencing Rachel's Challenge helped solidify a few things for me.  First of which was a destination.  I would like my long walk to take me to Rachel's hometown in Colorado.  Secondly, in keeping with the style of the knight errant I would like my good deeds to be done in Rachel's name.

Basically I am asking for your permission to use Rachel's name and make her hometown my destination. I understand that the idea of a man hiking about the American countryside like a modern day Don Quixote may seem very much out of the ordinary, and that you may hesitate to acquiesce.  I look forward to hearing a response from you and perhaps discussing my long walk with you further.

Thank you for your time,

Rodney Woods

Monday, February 7, 2011

Life is in the details.

So I've been doing some thinking about my walk and I've come up with some concerns.

Here's some examples:

1. How am I going to do it?
2. Is Columbine/Littleton too far?
3. What if I don't finish?

#1 I can tackle right now.  How am I going to do it?  The simple answer is "I don't know."  I have no idea how I'm going to accomplish this task.  I figure putting my right foot in front of my left foot is a good start and I plan on repeating that step as many times as necessary.

#2 is easy as well.  The answer there being..."probably.  Well actually more like: "It probably is too far but that's where you're headed by golly so quit your belly aching."

#3 is a bit more difficult.  I'm starting as soon as school lets out for the Summer (I'm a teacher if you hadn't surmised) so I will have most of June, all of July, and a healthy chunk of August to complete the trip.  A rough estimate would put me at about 72 days to finish the trip. So, 72 goes into 1,700 how many times? 23.611 repeating.  So I would have to walk an average of 23.6 miles per day to reach my destination.  That doesn't sound like much does it?  However I'm not an uber-hiker and I have to have time to do good deeds on the way or what is the point of being a knight errant?

I'm considering starting my walk in Boone, NC, home of my Alma Mater ASU.  Of course this would only take down my MPD (miles per day) to 20.5 and considering most hikers consider 15 mpd a good sane pace, I might be biting off more than I can chew.  What's a knight errant to do?