Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Exploring the AT from the Comfort of My Couch

While the hubs is out being a mountain man, I took the opportunity to read Bill Bryson's A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail. Mostly, I enjoyed the intense irony of reading it while taking a hot bath. But I also read it while out with the stroller and before bed the last two nights and on the couch during nap time and so on. I kind of got sucked in. I even tried to read it in the shower, which bombed on me. Surprisingly, I got the book a little wet. Who'd have thought?

Let me start out by saying that I'm not a hiker. Or a backpacker. Or a camper. By which I mean a person who camps, though I'm also not a recreational vehicle suitable for camping. In the past, I have been known to make out full wills including legal language and various addendums while sliding and screaming my way down the side of what was typically a mud-encrusted volcano. With that said, I may be turning over a new leaf. Last night, I told aforementioned mountain man that I kind of want to maybe possibly try backpacking some of the trail with him. Obviously not all of it. I have no delusions of being a thru-hiker.

His response: you are not the woman I married.

I'm still trying to figure out if that's a good thing or a bad thing. Regardless, I did thoroughly enjoy Bryson's book, and it obviously piqued my interest. As a writer, I would love to be able to achieve what he has: a brilliant mix of information and story with a tempo that kept perfect time. I even read the geology and botany bits that he included (which I normally would've callously skipped over, not being a science person). Obviously, Bryson and I have differing world views, but I thoroughly enjoyed my time with him. I'd picked up his A Short History of Nearly Everything while I was in England a few years ago but only got to read the first few chapters (I was staying at a friend's) which were mostly evolution and theorizing about how the planetary mush spawned intelligent life. Even then his writing was entrancing, but this was much more enjoyable subject matter.

So. Bill Bryson. Thanks for two and a half days of enjoyable reading. You made the alone time go so much more quickly.

1 comment:

  1. I was just discussing some snow camping with my beloved for Thanksgiving. She can't go for a multi-day snow shoeing adventure with me, but we can still get a little taste easy enough.