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[at-l] Thruhiking..is it a job?

Being here in PA, my interactions with Thrus is slanted.
Most don't like the state.  They just want to get it over with
and move on. Last year, at the porch of the half way club store,
one thru, rousing himself from his seat said "welp....time to git
back to work" and the other Thrus nodded and a chorus of
"yeps" spread and they gathered their stuff and with a look of
resignation headed on out.
It was a scene that could have been snipped from any lunch room
in any work place in the country....sans backpacks.
I don't know that I will continue if my hike turns to 'work'
How do you handle that?