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Re: [pct-l] Belden

On Tue, 3 Feb 1998 Charcholla@aol.com wrote:

> In a message dated 98-02-03 15:10:33 EST, ghummel@hydrogenburner.com writes:
> << Please don't bad mouth the people of Belden.  They really can be friendly
> if you give them a chance.  >>
> We "always" seem to hear the bad news and we do need to know that too.
> Sometimes, there may not be anything but bad news from a particular trailside
> town. 

In all fairness, I think Craig was complaining about Quincy which is about
15 miles up the road from Belden. I took two days off in Quincy this year
to spend at my friend's cabin while the fed me. [Yeah!]. Having visited
the town before I can confirm that Quincy has a redneck element but I
wouldn't avoid the town because of it. I had a little run-in with a drunk
cowboy while I was there but he was harmless, just drunk. Most of the
people there were as friendly as you'd find anywhere. I'd have enjoyed my
stay even if my friends hadn't fed me well...maybe not as much. :)

> I am glad though to also hear some good news, especially from Belden since
> I'll be hiking there in the July-August '98 timeframe. I hope I get the chance
> to meet the gentleman that was so kind to Greg.

Belden itself it one of my favorite towns along the way. I finished a
section hike there in '96 along with my stop last year. If you have an
inclination, sit at the bar, not the tables, for at least one drink and
start talking to whoever is sitting next to you. You probably won't meet
Greg's acquaintance but I'll wager that you'll meet someone interesting.

The one caveat with this is that there is a biker convention one of the
weekends in July (second or third), that is their big event for the year.
Several hikers have had bad experiences passing through that weekend. It
would be a good idea to adjust your schedule to avoid it.

All this reminds me of a story a teacher once told me that took place in
ancient Greece. It's been years since I've heard this so I'll probably get
some details mixed up.

A traveler stopped at the gates to Athens and asked the gatekeeper, "What
are the people here like?"

The gatekeeper asked, "Well, what are the people like where you come

"Oh, they're great people. Friendly, honest...", answered the traveler.

"You'll find the people here are the same.", responded the gatekeeper.

Another traveler asked the same question of the gatekeeper a little later
to which the gatekeeper asked again, "Well, what are the people like where
you come from?"

The second traveler answered, "They're awful! They cheat. They lie..."

"You'll find the people here are the same.", responded the gatekeeper.

The point is that you'll kind of find what you're looking for in people.
Most of the time I met great friendly folks in towns. In a couple towns,
Echo Lake and Snoqualmne Pass come to mind, the locals weren't really rude
but rather indifferent. It always hurt a little bit because I'd come to
look forward to meeting the friendly locals. 

-Karl "Birdman" Brandt

Karl Brandt PCT-97                      Center for Integrated Systems
kbrandt@stanford.edu                    Via Ortega Rd.
(650) 725-3686                          Stanford, CA 94305-4070

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