I’ve been blowing snot rockets for 4 days now. Thank God they’re getting fewer and father between. In a perfect world I would not have started the trail still recovering from a cold, but the world is in no way perfect. I hiked my highest mileage day yet yesterday, 16 miles. More than twice my original goal amount! I was planning on staying at a shelter 8 miles back, but I got there at lunch time, and decided to push on. My hiking partner Thomas is much faster than me so I told him he could go ahead and meet me at the next campsite, but he got confused and pitched his tent there. The mosquitoes were swarming so I set my tent up as well, in hopes of being able to eat dinner without simultaneously getting eaten myself. After we had settled in for the night, I still felt restless, so I convinced him we could go 6 more miles to town. We repacked all our gear and set out again for the third time that day. By the end my feet were killing me and I wished he had convinced me otherwise! One of the hardest things about being out here is meeting all these amazing people. They’re all so much faster than me, and I know I’m not fast enough to keep up with them or hike with them. I’m so slow compared to the rest of the people out here, I’m going about half as fast. Thomas goes home tomorrow, and after that I’ll be alone. Part of me is terrified, but for the most part, I can’t wait to truly start my journey.