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  1. #21
    Nicksaari's Avatar
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    yeah i second what Emerald is trying to get you to do. give back to the trail. whether its trail work, magic, or picking up trash along that road- this can give you something nice to look forward to, and you network, the most important thing. this can leave the option open for anything. i hope that some of this nice weather were having today in central VA extends to PA ans it cheers you up.
    or take a road trip to Maryland and go to Medieval Times and it will give you something to laugh at. but its kind of on the expensive time.
    rent one of the PATC cabins in PA and take a trip with BF and think some stuff over.

  2. #22

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    The last thing you want to do is have kids. What's that bumper sticker say, "6 Billion Miracles Are Enough"?? If you really want to nix out backpacking and seal up your future, give birth.

    And your quote: "The days are getting shorter and colder so I can't be outside as much." This one goes right over my head. I mean, if you can't be out in the winter, when can you be out? Here's my solution to the House Addicted: Get a bedroll or a tent, throw it out on the back deck or set up in the backyard, and start sleeping outside every night. Why not? You can be citified and stuck and still get your bag nights.

    How to become a nylon-pumping bum and spend more time out in the woods? The Question of the Ages.

  3. #23
    Registered User ASUGrad's Avatar
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    Volunteer when you aren't working. Someone, somewhere needs YOUR help.

  4. #24
    Registered User ShelterLeopard's Avatar
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    This is kind of why I wanted to do my hike before college- then I have something to do afterwards.

  5. #25
    Registered User ShelterLeopard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicksaari View Post
    yeah i second what Emerald is trying to get you to do. give back to the trail. whether its trail work, magic, or picking up trash along that road- this can give you something nice to look forward to, and you network, the most important thing. this can leave the option open for anything. i hope that some of this nice weather were having today in central VA extends to PA ans it cheers you up.
    or take a road trip to Maryland and go to Medieval Times and it will give you something to laugh at. but its kind of on the expensive time.
    rent one of the PATC cabins in PA and take a trip with BF and think some stuff over.
    And a little trail magic never hurts. (This suggestion has nothing to do with the fact that I'll be a thru hiker next year...) Seriously, give hikers rides from the trailhead, depending where you live, just drive to the trail and wait, you might like to talk to them. And call your hiker friends from the trail. Or like Nick said, pick up trash. Or come up and hike with me and some other WBers on my second shakedown hike in January.

  6. #26
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    Really, emerald only hoped she'd not spend her time between assignments moping. It's counterproductive. There are few predicaments out of which one can think one's self. Thinking unsupported by action ordinarily doesn't result in much.

    She could hike with BMECC on Sunday. I hear there are endorphin trees growing all along a forgotten path built by the CCC. A few who know this place will return to pay our respects and see what remains of this secret trail.

  7. #27

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    Be free little pickle, be free. Be Alexander Supertramp.
    Um...didn't he die as a product of his own recklessness?

    To Pickleodeon, I've literally been where you are, specifically the sub-teaching in my mid-20s while living with parents, and the feeling like a failure after a pretty significant accomplishment (getting a masters, surviving cancer, getting into a Ph.D. program with a good rep.).

    Regarding the former, (and I'm very biased in this regard, as I have been teaching for almost 10 years and am trying to leave the professon), I would leave teaching if possible. I've taught both secondary and higher ed. In secondary ed., quality education has taken a back seat to absurd policy-making by out of touch administrators. And, higher ed has gone from being an educational institution to a student-as-consumer business enterprise. In either case, it doesn't pay (financially and psychologically) to be an educator. Forget what you might have seen in The Dead Poet's Society or Dangerous Minds, go corporate, make more money for equally soul sucking work, and move out.

    Regarding the latter, I think that when something super awesome happens (or one does something awesome), it becomes incredibly difficult to settle for the ordinary. Awesome is like a drug, you always want more and in larger doses. So, the way I see it, there are two options. One, you and the bf can work together to positively adjust to a "normal" life. Or, two, throw caution to the wind, think of something even more awesome to top the AT, and dedicate your life to accomplishing that. Then, repeat until it kills you. Frankly, I'm a fan of #2, but that's just how I roll. :P Seriously though, you have to figure out what's going to work for you. And while I'm not saying that you shouldn't take some time to decompress and be a little depressed, you shouldn't let it go on for too long, else you find yourself in a downward spiral.

    I wish you the best.

  8. #28
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    You are anything but a failure, P. In fact, quite the opposaite... You are AMAZING!

    I think what you've got is a bad (normal?) case of the "Post AT Thru-hiker Blues." And simply stated, they suck! Having lived it, I agree with our hiking brethren on WB, who have suggested that the "Blues" are not all that unusual. (Gotta be a song in there somewhere...)

    PM sent, P.

    See ya!
    When you get to those unexpected situations in life where it’s difficult to figure something out, just ask yourself, “What would MacGyver do?”
    See ya!
    Rickles McPickles

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    you're young, alive and healthy. what's the problem? quit feeling sorry for yourself and start living.
    Yes, carpe diem.

  10. #30
    So many trails... so little time. Many Walks's Avatar
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    Pickleodeon, you're really not in a bad place, but you just want to get your life moving again. A lot of thru hikers find they need to work through that. Your advantage is that you are young and have the time to go after things you really enjoy. Find something small that peaks your interest and gets you excited, then pursue it. As mentioned before volunteer, or check out courses at a nearby Community College, etc. Just try different things till you find something that feels right for you. Then set your sites higher for bigger challenges in the same area of interest. You'll get there. Wish you the best!
    That man is the richest whose pleasures are the cheapest. Henry David Thoreau

  11. #31
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    Seems to me she's not in a bad place at all and I can understand her frustration with not being able to get on with her post-hike program.

    I remember not long after my own through hike when what may have been all of Berks County's 2000 milers and ALDHA members helped BMECC to build and relocate Eagle's Nest Shelter. BTI (before the Internet) life was simpler, hikers seemed less splintered into various groups and to have more time for such things.

    I'm hopeful I'll live long enough to see things come full-circle.

  12. #32

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    Alexander Supertramp? Not the brightest idea around...

    Slave to the Elite? Oh boy, here we go again--the effects of Lala Land University, Inc.

    To the OP, what you are experiencing is normal, and in a strange way, good. It means you think about your life and what you want. It means you understand that a good life is possible and worth pursuing.

    If you like teaching, consider getting a TEFL cert--Teaching English to Foreign Learners. Check it, or other similar certs, out on the web. It would mean you'd travel though--to other countries for X number of months or years. That can be hard on a relationship. But it's an option.

    Try to enjoy each day and the people around you. That alone will make a marked difference in your life. Work comes and goes, but here's the trick--recognize the difference between the employee and employer mindset.

    Don't fall into the bitter mindset of class-warfare you see in posts above--int the mindset of a victim of imaginary foes.

    Life is good, and finite-at least as we know it here. Enjoy. Things always change, there is always the good and the bad.

  13. #33
    Registered User DrRichardCranium's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superman View Post
    Yes, carpe diem.

    "Carpe diem" is Latin for: "Seize the fish."

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrRichardCranium View Post
    "Carpe diem" is Latin for: "Seize the fish."
    Salmon would be good.

  15. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Not So Fast! View Post
    I'm no head-doctor, Pickleodeon, but your post sounds dangerously like the very American syndrome of "I'll be happy when...."

    When I have a real job.

    When my boyfriend marries me.

    When I can move out of my parents house.

    When I can hike the trail again.

    I KNOW you are struggling, but make a choice to be happy NOW. Get off the computer, and away from the TV. Go volunteer somewhere. You will be amazed at your ability to find things to do where you feel welcomed, valued, and part of a community. Go make trail magic in Berks County (it certainly doesn't have to be for hikers).

    When you were on the trail, you put yourself out there and made it happen. So put yourself out there again!!! It's just geography......

    I wish you all the very best, but please understand that you are on a very slippery slope when you write that "my boyfriend...the only aspect of my life where I feel comfortable and happy". It's just not healthy to place that much of your well-being so squarely in the hands of another, especially when you refer to the freedom you found on the trail. Carpe diem!

    What he said.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

  16. #36
    formerly amazonwoman
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    You are the only person that can make you happy. Don't wait for your boyfriend, parents or employer to do it for you.

    Get a real, steady job. Get a place to live. Get back to the gym. Get your happiness back.
    Dancer (Julie)
    "What saves a man (woman) is to take a step. Then another step." ---Antoine de Saint-Exupery

  17. #37

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    There's so much excellent advice in this thread.
    Take a hybrid dose of it (and the advice about getting out of teaching is spot-on-- it's not Hollywood out there and even a master's degree won't lift you up out of the swamp of intractable stuckness.) and plug in the solutions that work for you. You can mix and match...

    [By the way, regarding the suggestion to read Ayn (Prounounced "Ein") Rand's books (Her real name was Alisa Zinov'yevna Rosenbaum): Don't waste your time. She wrote 1,000-page anti-communist pamphlets and spent her entire life lashing out in response to what the commies did to her family in Russia -- talk about "stuck." She never understood that the opposite of communist is not escapist. Going Galt means running away, just like she did from her own home land and family and an act from which she never recovered psychologically. Our nation has suffered terribly at the hands of her acolytes. Rand's ideas work until, you know, you have to live in the real world, call a cop, need an ambulance or fireman, insurance, help from any other person, get old and need compassionate caregivers, etc. Just an FYI. ]

  18. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darwin again View Post
    [By the way, regarding the suggestion to read Ayn (Prounounced "Ein") Rand's books (Her real name was Alisa Zinov'yevna Rosenbaum): Don't waste your time. She wrote 1,000-page anti-communist pamphlets and spent her entire life lashing out in response to what the commies did to her family in Russia -- talk about "stuck." She never understood that the opposite of communist is not escapist. Going Galt means running away, just like she did from her own home land and family and an act from which she never recovered psychologically. Our nation has suffered terribly at the hands of her acolytes. Rand's ideas work until, you know, you have to live in the real world, call a cop, need an ambulance or fireman, insurance, help from any other person, get old and need compassionate caregivers, etc. Just an FYI. ]
    That's why she's so appealing to 20-somethings struggling to assert their independence. But why shouldn't we return to the gold standard?

  19. #39

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    Wow, that is some serious rubbish about Ayn Rand above. This thread just jumped the shark in the ignorant-angry-college-indoctrinated-student kind of way.

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Montana AT05 View Post
    Wow, that is some serious rubbish about Ayn Rand above. This thread just jumped the shark in the ignorant-angry-college-indoctrinated-student kind of way.
    Rand is big among high schoolers, true enough.
    But there's no anger at all in what I wrote, just truth. I don't cosider myself ignorant or closed minded or of the type of person who thinks I know better than anyone else on any topic. Life is too big to be an expert in all matters.
    Do some research and take an objective look at Rand and her work and it's fairly clear. Facts are facts. I have a degree in English literature, but I don't consider myself indoctrinated, however, I consider Rand defenders to be indoctrinated. What's the difference between being a narrow-minded defender of Rand and being a narrow-minded defender of say, ultralight hiking? Or Karl Marx?
    Everything I wrote about Rand is true. I even provided you with references.

    If there's a message in Rand's work, it's to take responsibility for one's self, not blame social-governmental institutions for our limitations.
    Hikers should know this in spades.
    Peace!

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