I have a daily identity crisis over being in school again and having to be more sedentary then I'm used to. I start to feel very bad about myself when I look back through photos of magnificent places in Washington and all the time I spent wandering through them, because hour by hour there is a stark contrast between my days now and my days then.
Then we drive an hour on the Parkway and get to this wild and endless stretch of mountains and those feelings snap away in a cold gust of wind.
Our plan was to sleep on top of the ridge and look up all night at a big bowl of stars. But someone did not bring enough armor against the cold- I'll give you a hint, it's the person with a history of being ill prepared. Even after I borrowed all of Dave's extra layers and blankets, including his gloves and his bivvy sac, I was still too cold to risk sleeping.
So we watched the sun drop, and then retreated down and slept in a grove of pine trees.
It was still a brisk night. I had two stretches of sleep and one long interval in the middle where I shivered myself awake. I needed a sip of water and there was ice in the center of the water bottle.
I love colder weather. I love the way it makes me feel so snappy and alive and grateful of the tiniest comforts. In fact, I was so excited to embrace it that I forgot to pack for it.
But even a little bit of suffering yields tremendous rewards. The weekend drained to its last drop and as I got ready for my early morning class, moving effortless around the warm house, I felt much easier about things. My bed was soft and warm and I fell quickly asleep, which is something I can almost never do.
Check out the unearthly beauty from one night in the Blue Ridge, my home for now, a place I have barely begun to explore.
For more photos of little adventures, follow me on Instagram @melinadream