Currently at PCT mile 152 at Paradise Valley Cafe
Ahh… a zero day. I love the thought of just laying around all day, eating food, drinking beer and relaxing. But it didn’t quite go like that. It was definitely restful for my body… I didn’t hike any miles, so that’s good. My brain is kind of fried, though. Most of the day was full of busy-work getting ready for our next section: loading up on food and toiletries and trying not to forget anything, planning a resupply, meetup points, where we might be and when, where to get water the next four days, maps, blister-cuttin’, transferring photos to the hard drive, lunch, pharmacy and grocery shopping… before I knew it, it was time for a cello concert.
What? That’s not a weird thing for a PCT thru-hiker to do on a zero day, is it!? The day actually did end with an awesome cello concert. So as exhausting as this day was, it ended really nice. Cuddles, another thru-hiker, is bouncing his cello up the trail as he goes, mailing it to Post Offices in towns he plans to stop in. He’s performing short concerts… we were fortunate enough to be in Idyllwild when he was playing at the Green Cafe.
The Green Cafe is actually a guy’s house – a super nice guy named Jeff. He holds gatherings for locals to get together for movies on Friday nights. It was quite a unique and unforgettable experience to chit-chat with Idyllwild locals at a usually local hangout. It was Green Cafe’s 16th birthday, too. They had snacks, wine, cookies and cake. I was still feeling full from lunch so I wasn’t able to partake in much of the food-eating (seriously what is wrong with me? Haha!).
Thank you Jeff, as well as the folks in Idyllwild, for welcoming us smelly hikers into your home and town. And thank you, Cuddles, for a great performance. It totally leveled out my overwhelming zero day. I now feel balanced… and so dang ready to be back on the trail!
I am interested to see how my other zeroes go. I currently am not the biggest fan, but I have this feeling that might change. I prefer trail pretty much always, but the luxuries of town are sure nice, too (that shower was sooo awesome!). If I can find a way to balance my busy crap with chillaxin’ I’ll be set.
Signing out for the night… anxious to start back on the trail early tomorrow. I hear it’s the best scenery so far, tough, windy, and cooler. I’m excited. Bring it!
Oh… a p.s. I wanted to mention how hiker-friendly the Paradise Valley Cafe is. They have great food and they allow hikers to camp behind the building (or on the porch, apparently). The whole town of Idyllwild is hiker friendly, too. Lots of thru-hiker discounts and very reasonable room rates. We are at the Apple Blossom Inn, staying in basically a small 2-bedroom apartment for under $70. It’s a very cute little mountain town… I hope I can make it back sometime!