Getting past the hurdles

After nearly two weeks in the field, I’ve reached the first bump. This is the stage of the program where I desperately want to be back in civilization. All my underwear smells disgusting. I’ve been wearing the same shirt for five days. It’s pouring rain again. My sleeping bag keeps freezing at night. I haven’t had a proper shower since we left.

Except I think it’s also at this stage where small things start to become really amazing. I splashed creek water on my face today and it felt like the best bath of my life. The view this morning was absolutely gorgeous because it rained all night—mist and fog in the distance, a mosaic of blues and greens across the forest and pasture in the distance. Eating apples has become the best snack in the world—I’m trying to break my addiction to processed sugar.

Somehow, at the end of the day, it all evens out. I know I sleep better and longer here than I ever have at home or school. I eat better, I feel better, and even my perpetually angry stomach has calmed down. Sometimes, I wish we had real shelter, a heater, a shower. But sometimes, I think the whole rest of the country would be better off with less.

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