Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Days 58, 59 & 60: A Mammoth Birthday

We rolled into Mammoth midday on my birthday (June 23rd) and settled in, eagerly looking forward to our two and a half days off. Two and a half days!! How luxurious.  At this point in our trip we were running about 4 or 5 days ahead of our projected schedule and because we had plans to meet our favorite Conley Crew in Tahoe around July 7th, we had some time to kill.  And let me tell you what, we enjoyed every minute of our time-killing.  Being able to take two days off trail does so much for our bodies and our minds.  We can actually relax on town days without feeling stressed to get everything done. Our bodies start to feel strong and rested again, and we're able to take part in fun, non-hiking activities.

Mammoth is an adorable town and was definitely a highlight.  To make a great town even greater, we had all kinds of Outward Bound friends to hang out with.  Having worked the last three summers at the OB Sierra base camp, I met a slew of awesome folks who have now moved on to work for another company that is based in Mammoth.  After a delicious and fancy birthday dinner with my dashing husband (who said goodbye to his curls and got a fresh new buzz cut), we met up for drinks with Ryan and Mike.  The four of us had some great laughs and caught up at the Clock Tower Bar.

His new haircut and my awesome loaner shirt... on our way to birthday dinner

The next afternoon we met my friend Laura (from OB Philadelphia) and her boyfriend Jon for a tasting at Mammoth Brewing Company.  While tasting their delicious beers (Trav highly recommends their seasonal brews) we ran into Mike again and were invited to his house for a big barbecue with mutual thru-hiker friends and more Mammoth locals.  My friend Jess showed up too, and we all had a wonderful time cooking, eating and drinking.

To round things off we got to have lunch on our last day off with our dear friend Matty (who I've spent many OB field days with and even more friend days).  Matty was in the area from Santa Cruz celebrating his bachelor party.  We had a huge pizza lunch with him and his buds from Pittsburgh (all awesome dudes, and all Steelers fans!) and got to make a toast to him and the lovely Vanessa, another dear friend, who were a handful of days from tying the knot.

In the midst of visiting with all of these friends in person, I also received a lot of love from friends and family from afar.  We waltzed into the post office Monday morning to pick up packages and were overwhelmed when the postal worker had to bring a cart of all of our boxes out. 'Someone must have had a birthday' he grinned.  Back at the Motel 6 we opened 7 boxes of goodies and remained good and sugared up until we left Mammoth the next morning.  Huge thanks to everyone for the care packages and cards. I felt very loved and special. Twenty nine is going to be a great year.

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