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Starchild's Journey

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In the last couple of emails I have dove into some of the very spiritual aspects of my personal journey. I have tried to just do a physical one but they seem to run together. My upbringing has me see the spiritual but will try to incorporate more of the physical in this one. I don't know how I will do on that we will see...

I want to thank you for the overwhelming support and want to report what means to me and my journey. It confirms that I am on the right path for my life. But it has a much more personal meaning - it gives me comfort I would not have otherwise. Comfort in knowing that people care for to make me feel at home here.

The AT is not easy. Daily there is pain of some kind. For instance It is not uncommon to apply duct tape to feet in the morning to help with sore spots. Walking after not moving or a bit is sometimes comical due to stiffness. Other pains come and goes. It amazes me the body's ability to after a brief reminder of a sore spot to suppress that pain to allow travel.

Food on the trail is a bit of trial and error and correction. Finding out what works and what doesn't and what is available. There seems to be no one size fits all solution. Nor is there a one size fits most. For me it has been listening to my body's needs with the generalized rule of high protein for repair on the trail and high calorie in towns for upcoming energy needs.

For a short term backpack the needs of the body are nowhere as critical as the demands of thru hiking the AT. Many hikers who have started with the concept of calories have either dropped out or have lost a lot of weight. Some have abandoned their diet plan of mostly honey buns which they initially selected for the high calorie content low cost and it is easy to obtain along the trail.

For me I do feel the effects of if my food is right. Some days I feel fantastic others including quite recently I felt like I was dragging and tired. I knew somehow, I assume thru experience with this body, that I was lacking some nutrient though I didn't know what. I also woke up with extreme hunger which doesn't happen to me. I knew my body was telling me it needed something but I didn't know what.

I am happy to say that is no longer the case and I do find myself feeing great this morning and slept without hunger. I'm sad to say I don't know what it was that satisfied it. I do know what I did differently however and it was the ability to try something different that seemed to solve it.

I had dinner at a BnB. Multi courses of food I usually don't have especially on the trail. It was a bit of southern home cooking. Also I had a glass of dry red wine which is a rarity on the trail. Whatever it was what nutrient I needed I am thankful that I did get it as that has made a huge difference in how I feel.

The AT is certainally not easy on a body so I wanted to take this extra time to thank you for the comforts that many of you have provided me and some examples on exactly how fantastically essential these comforts are.
Written 3 days ago ...

At this time I am in Buena Vista VA a couple of days from the Shanadoas. I came in here because of low supplies not enough to get to Wanesboro which is the gateway town to that park. The resupply was quite expected though I did not know what town it would be. I also didn't realize it would be on Mothers Day which limited options. But enough was open here and I got a quick ride in.

The ride into Buena Vista was more then quick and I was directed to it. Getting to the road I see a car coming in the direction I needed to travel. The driver pointed the other way. I follow that and walk in the opposite direction that I need to go. I walk the other way maybe 1/4 mile and find a guy dropping off a hiker and he offers me a ride into town. This is another level of support and caring that I see as Starchild.


Written sometime before the above trip to Beuna Vista...

Virginia was made for traveling big miles at least so far . The trail was fairly level and accents and descents were so gradual that I could hike at full speed without stopping through most of it. Though not all of it perhaps.

It's hard to tell as I was hiking with a fellow hiker. This was one of the few times I hiked with another person for the day. He followed me and because he was there I was going faster the. I would have when traveling alone. It was also a day with steep uphills and lots of them. We challenged each other and were moving fast and both burnt out early only doing 17 or so miles while I suspect that at a unchallenged pace I could have done more. .,,

Troutville was my last trail town. I noticed that there is a campground with what I read was a resupply store right off trail so knowing this i didn't carry much out of Troutville. My plan was to travel this short 0.3 miles to the camp store and resupply there for the continuation of my journey.

Problem was the camp store was not 0.3 miles off trail. The camp store was about 1.5 miles off the AT. Needing to resupply I walked the road to the store. I noted that after the camp continuing down the road I could rejoin the AT which would mean missing a few miles of trail and also a minor mountain.

Feeling a bit run down I was thinking of doing exactly that. It made sense a honest mistake and a reasonable adjustment to compensate.

At the camp store I met another thru hiker and told him my plan to bypass that section. Another thru hiker came and there were three of us at the camp store. At that time a couple offered all of us a lift back to the trail and also gave us all soda. So with that the short AT section that I felt justified in bypassing earlier was not bypassed.

There is much more to that another aspect as how I see things as Starchild. While it is the same story it is though a different perspective that of my child self.

I know I want and need to go as light as possible and have this book and other info to help me do this. I also know I am guided and helped. In this case I thought I could resupply easy after two days. This means carrying so much less and I can go further and easier. I had a problem. The resupply was much further then I remember reading. I also had a long day. So I looked and saw a shortcut I could take. This would make up for the extra time and distance to get to the camp store and also bypass a climb which seemed ok for me and I told the angel of my plan. She understood but told me that though it might have seemed ok to me she would rather me hike that section instead of bypass it. She offered to carry me back or I did have the option of walking to the bypass. The choice was mine. I chose to have her take me back and she gave me a treat when she returned me to the trail.

To me those two events are the same. One as my physical self and the other as my eternal self. I see them in both ways.


I also wish to share about a stay in what is considered a haunted shelter. The Punchbowl shelter is said to by haunted by Ottie. A 4 year old who died ontop of a nearby mountain. The story was he got lost while gathering firewood for school ( this seemed to be a regular chore for students in this school back in the 1800's to help them when they got restless sitting at their desk). There was a search for Ottie but Ottie was not found. Several months later someone did find Ottie's body 7 miles away on top of a mountain. The story goes that he haunts the nearby shelter.

I was curious about this and it appeared that that shelter was the one I was to stay at. Having former contact with the supernatural I was welcoming a experience.

The first thing I got to was the dedication plaque for Ottie. I felt it and felt a great sadness for those who have lost him. Going further to the shelter I expected perhaps a disturbing night. When I got there I saw a boy scout troop camping there. I also saw a mother bird caring for her chicks I also found abundant water in a place where there was very little.

What I got (as Starchild) was not a haunting but a transition. Ottie was lead away to a better place. He traveled as high as he could physically and then transcended higher. He became a angel and blesses that area in particular taking care of children such as the boy scouts and the chicks and the starchildren such as myself.

The haunting was never from Ottie but from people who didn't understand. These people's fears and insecurities about the unknown has caused the haunting which runs counter to the blessing that Ottie wishes to give to all those who can accept it. It hit me about all the people trying to contact the dead while the answers to the questions the seek are through contacting the living.

I do have quite a bit more in my notebook but I feel if I wait till I get everything in a email I'll end up never sending one so I will send this one now and the rest will go into the next one or something like that. Again I want to extend a big thank you for those who have provided comfort to me through your gifts and again since I still have a long way to go do encourage those who wish to help to drop me a email as to how the can.

Peace and thanks from mile 840 of 2189
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