I spent last night at the old homeplace in Martinsville, working like the devil on a new short story that is past its deadline. I made good progress. But as I had managed to fit in very little strenuous exercise last week, the craving to hike after a geocache had settled heavily upon me. The complication here is that, over the past thirteen years, I have found almost every cache for fifty to a hundred miles in every direction. Still, I thought maybe I could figure out some place to go this morning not too far from Martinsville.
Well, I checked the map and saw a few in the Rocky Mount area, about thirty miles north of Martinsville, one of them in Waid Park, where I have hiked and cached several times in the past. This one, called “Alas, Poor Yorick,” has been live for a few months, resides a good ways out in the woods, and no rain was predicted for the morning. Temperatures are in the high 90s this weekend, but, regardless, I set my sights on Yorick for a relatively early solo outing. I figured while I was out there, I could make a little side trip to visit the Ferrum College campus, my old alma mater.
When I left Martinsville, the thermometer read 83℉, and the humidity hadn’t yet reach its oppressive heights. I ended up taking a back road I don’t believe I have ever traveled before, which turned out pretty cool. I always enjoy exploring unfamiliar backroads. Anyway, when I reached the park, the temperature had hit 90℉, and the air was just turning to soup. I set out on the trail, which, since it was mostly shady, proved not too uncomfortable. But the hike was lovely—not too long, not too short, and in places a bit rugged. I found the cache readily, and this made for a most gratifying morning, I can tell you.
Sure enough, afterward, I drove over to Ferrum, about five miles west of the park on Hwy 40. I cruised around a few of my old haunts, which I enjoy doing every now and again. I must say, the campus is considerably more attractive and well-maintained than it was then—not that it was ever not picturesque. I did happen by the site of my first alcohol-related disaster, which is the reason I don’t drink white wine (see “Why I Don’t Drink White Wine”). Actually, I do drink white wine on rare occasion, but it’s not my favorite. Oftentimes, far from it.
Anyhoo, I got in a lot of writing, got in a bit of caching, and there must yet be more writing. So much time, so little to do....
Wait, reverse that.
|Now, who do you suppose that is watching me from over yonder?|
Why, it's Yorick! As Yorick is not looking so well, I figured I'd help
keep him from spreading
so much death around.
A view of the Pigg River from the trail. I spent a lot of time at the
Pigg River in my Ferrum Days,
mostly engaged in unfamily-friendly activities, about which I shall say no more.
|Old fellow on the trail. Almost as old as Yorick.|