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Re: [at-l] journals - (was thru-hikering attitude)

I've never been able to keep a journal, and I tried starting when I began
my thruhike, but it petered out within a couple of days. What I was able to
do, however, was write a little four-line rhyme about each day I spent out
there, mostly for my own amusement. They were dumb rhymes, and inside
references, for the most part. I wrote them in the shelter registers, then
copied them into my notebooks. It was too short a format for long,
thoughtful entries, and tended to be impressionistic--focusing on some
detail, or stray thought, that came to me during the day. Or maybe a quick
summary of where I'd been an who I'd seen. By the end of the hike, I had
190 of the boogers (the "Ballad of the Rhymin' Worm that I published on the
web) and I was surprised at the extent to which they brought back the
memory of the hike--who I was with each day, what I saw, etc. And, since
they were short and light, I wasn't sitting there for hours at the time,
exhaustively documenting everything I'd seen: usually I scribbled one down
when I got to a shelter, or stopped for lunch--often about the hike the day
previous. Later, with maps and guidebooks, those rhymes helped me recreate
my hike when it was time to put it down in a more detailed format. You
wouldn't have to rhyme for this to work--a sentence or two would accomplish
the same thing. It's amazing how they add up. The thing came out to a good
twenty-plus pages of "poetry" when all was said and done. I still enjoy
reading back over it.

--Rhymin' Worm '97

At 8:10 AM -0600 12/20/98, Uncle Milt wrote:
>Morning everyone...
>The journal thread has been very interesting. I had an opportunity to be
>on the other side of the journal writing as a transcriber for Gypsy on her
>'97 hike - posted exclusively on AT-L. I was very excited to have the
>opportunity to do this for Gypsy and at that time receiving those journals
>in the mail allowed me to hike vicariously with Gypsy.
>It was a very unique experience for me that I'll will keep with me
>* From the Appalachian Trail Mailing List |  http://www.backcountry.net  *

* From the Appalachian Trail Mailing List |  http://www.backcountry.net  *