May 17. I spent the rest of a lazy day yesterday enjoying the town of Waynesboro. I sat at the library a little longer, relaxed in the shade on a tree in the front lawn, and then took off walking to see the old downtown. I walked up and down Main Street and checked out the shops. I headed over to the Kroger grocery store and called Amy to talk about my food options. The last 2 resupplies I did on my own and I did a horrible job buying good food with big calories that I'd eat on the trail. I walked through the isles in Kroger and asked Amy about different foods, where to find them, and what to do with them. I think I have a better idea now of what I want to eat on the trail! After the grocery store I went to the local Chinese Buffet and had a big dinner. After that I headed over to the YMCA and checked in at the desk for the free camping. I sat at the library a little longer and made my way down the river walk to a side trail that led to a big open lawn for tent camping. By the time I got there 6 other people were already set up for the night. A few of them headed to the grocery store and came back with some food and beer and we all sat out in the grass enjoying the warm evening. It was a great night, fantastic weather, and the field we camped in was on the outskirts of the town, quiet enough to camp, but not as quiet as the woods. I woke up in the morning with a soaking wet tent...the morning dew and the condensation on the inside made it feel like it had rained overnight, even though it hadn't. We all sat around for a little while at the picnic table waiting for our tents to dry and then we decided as a group to leave them up and walk over to Weasie's Kitchen for a great pancake breakfast. I took my backpack with me but left the tent to dry with the others and on the way out the city maintenance truck pulled up with lawn mowers and we asked if they needed us to move our tents...they said no, we could keep them up to dry. We all had a huge breakfast at Weasie's, one of the best on the trail! They have all you can eat pancakes but I opted for a pancake, bacon, and egg meal. After breakfast we all waddled back to the tents to find the city crew mowing around them! As we took our dry tents down there were patches of uncut tall grass where we had slept, but the crew didn't seem to mind. I walked back to the library to start another lazy day, laying low around town.
An interesting fact: Waynesboro and Fort Wayne, Indiana (near where I grew up) are both named after the same person, General Anthony Wayne.
Even more interesting: Wikipedia makes reference to this fact in the Fort Wayne page by listing "General 'Mad' Anthony Wayne" while Waynesboro only uses "General Anthony Wayne". Is one town "Mad" and the other is not?
Meat arrived in town mid day and spent some time getting a shower and doing laundry. I made my way back to Weasie's for lunch and it was worth it! Meat was having lunch at the China Buffet and while I waited for him outside I met a couple of hikers, a father and daughter, and realized I had heard about them from a friend in Santa Barbara and was supposed to say hello to them on the trail! The father and daughter had hiked the PCT last year when she was 11 years old...this year the AT, and next year the CDT, and she will be the youngest person to hike the Triple Crown of trails! Meat and I got a ride to the hotel and met my Aunt Karen and Uncle Jim when they arrived from the airport. We had a great dinner downtown and relaxed the rest of the night
May 18. We packed up from the hotel and headed out for some tourist events for the day! We visited Thomas Jefferson's house and had a great time touring the house and gardens. We stopped by the University as well while everyone was preparing for graduation this weekend. We dropped Meat off at the airport so he could fly home to his sister's graduation this weekend and Karen, Jim, and I headed back to a hotel in Waynesboro. We resupplied our food bags and got the packs ready for hiking tomorrow. This was my fourth night off the trail. I had fun and enjoyed the time off but I was very ready to get back to the trail! Happy hiking!