Shoes

Me on the top of a bluff. Note the green "emergency" poncho in my pocket.
Me on the top of a bluff. Note the green “emergency” poncho in my pocket.
Brand new just hours before, now muddy and dirty the way hiking shoes should be.
Brand new just hours before, now muddy and dirty the way hiking shoes should be.

On Friday, after work, I went camping.  I left for Baraboo directly from my Rockford job shaving a few hours off the total trip.

My day started early.  I got up before 4 AM and headed off to the gym.  There I met Tom, my co-camper.  Tom and I are both helpers by nature, and that morning he reminded me, “Don’t forget to bring your hiking shoes.”  I replied, “Already packed.”

I drove to Rockford, worked, and then I was off to Beloit to connect with Tom and Charlie.  Less than two hours later, and we arrived at our campsite.

We had talked about the possibility of rain. We had decided that if it was raining we would pack up and leave.  It was raining and it looked like it was going to continue to rain. Beyond rain, it was cold.  What did we do? We decided to stay.

Shortly after arriving I heard an untypable utterance from Tom followed by, “I forgot my hiking shoes.  I saw them in the laundry room and I made a mental note to bring them.  Then, I forgot them!”  Ironic, as he had just reminded me to bring mine that morning.

It turned out that hiking shoe issues abounded.  Charlie had his, but they were soaking wet.  I had mine, but they were dripping too.  My feet were wet and cold, and that was just from walking about the campsite.  How in the world would we be able to hike for hours up and down muddy and slippery bluffs? Wet plus cold feet equals one miserable hike.

To hike anywhere Tom had to buy some shoes, and luckily he knew of a great shoe store a few towns over. We piled into his car and off we went.  Tom got new shoes, and Charlie and I did too.  All waterproof.

We headed off on our muddy and slippery hike.  We were cold, we were wet..  but we had happy, dry feet.  It was a wonderful hike.

It is always a good idea to plan and prepare, but sometimes a mistake can have its benefits too.  In this case the mistake of one made three hiker’s feet dry and happy.

My goal today is to understand that sometimes I can’t control everything.  My goal today is to understand that on occasion my lack of control can lead to a better outcome.

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