An Adventure With My Best Friend

Kneeling in front of my tent I knew that this was the best idea ever. Dropping out of school, Here with everything I owned in the world and my best friend Sam to hike the Appalachian trail!! 

Told at Passim, Cambridge Mass 7/16/2018

Told at Passim, Cambridge Mass 7/16/2018

On This first morning, the smell of the early morning dew in the Georgian woods, the birds just starting to chirp excitedly. Beams of sunshine slanting through the mist carving open a new day for us!!

My SOUL was exploding with excitement and to share it with a Best friend!! 

Turning to Sam, I gently pushed him awake, and with a smile, and excitement 

handed him

his 1/4 cup of concentrated protein enriched wheat germ and diced dried fruits.

"LEAVE ME ALONE", he batted it away scattering it to the ground and stuffed a handful of candy corn in his mouth washing it down with a can of coke and rolled over.

-- Ouch -- 

 I don't thing that we are on the same page.


A few years earlier when Sam found me, I was alone and insecure, he made me feel special, he let me know that we'd be friends, best friends. And so started a long term friendship.

We started to do everything together. He taught me guitar, I bought his old broken 6 string, He sold me a great old stereo system that I really liked. 

He was the life of the party, or at least that's what he though he was, he was good with women, or at least he thought he was, .. he'd barrel into any room with jokes, and slaps on backs... so we went to a lot of places, I followed along in his wake and felt secure and cared for. 

Then we hung out all the time at his place, watched old movies and listened to his albums. Eventually he borrowed back my speakers because the sound would be better on his system  .... 

After a year of College I was still lost, I needed to walk away from the drugs and parties, the failed major, think about who I wanted to be,  Sam encouraged me to drop out and do my dream hike, 2,000 mile Appalachian trail .. with him, although he wasn't really the camper type...

An adventure with a best friend.. was what my soul needed

----- bridge -- Byron My Best Friend ------

Thoughts of Adventures always reminded me that I'd have with my childhood best friend Byron Wesche, my Kindred Spirit.

Byron and I would look up into a tree and together we'd see a tree fort, and suddenly we were up in the rigging of a pirate ship, playing swords, he was Peter Pan and I was a lost boy.

We'd dig pit traps to catch tigers and pirates, and hide them with thin branches and leaves, we'd make secret forts with thick woven pine needle roofs. During hide and seek, Other kids wondered where we'd disappear to in our wonderland, we'd dive into an under ground fort listening and laughing as we heard then run all over the woods looking for those two disappearing boys from Neverland.

-- the loss --

His house was just a few houses away and over the town line, so we eventually I lost him as a friend...

how I miss him. 

but time, different schools,  

and finally, a fatal car accident, permanently separated us.


Sam was a different sort of friend, 

    He helped me get over my shyness, helped me plan for the hike, 

At least He encouraged me when I had doubts, or was it laughed with me at my fears as we planned the trip, I also began to wonder, and never understood what his need for the trip was. 

I walked with wet boots, hiked till blisters turned to calluses, but the hike meant everything to me,  I asked Sam how it was going breaking in his boots, because it was so important, and I was finding it very painful. He said that it was going great, he just wore them to work each day,  I thought that was great, although I did remember much later, that he took the train to work....

I carried heavy packs with rocks up and down stairs to get my self in shape, I asked if he wanted to join me,   he said he was ok, because he already had rocks in his backpack, much later I realized that it also was in his closet....  I read all of the maps and journals, I sent food boxes ahead to postoffice's along the trail, ... I was ready,.... But...


But Without Sam's support After fights with parents for dropping out of college, and the difficult transportation issues with trains and car rides to get to the head of the trail I never would have started.

But after that first fateful morning in front of the tent... I realized.... This was only the first morning of the first day of the trail,

I ended up giving him a check, the rest of my savings, for all of his food and gear (that I didn't need to carry), but I didn't know how to say no... and we walking for 3 days till we crossed a road that he could hitch hike away on so he could have a good summer...

So I hike on alone for the rest of the summer...

Later ... One day,  -- I woke up, or I should say I came to -- leaning against a tree,

 I had passed out from heat stroke, must have been out for several hours, It was 100 degrees, I'd run out of water, and was alone in some wilderness somewhere.

That night, As I lied face in the dirt, head pounding, waiting while water dripped slowly from moss into a tin cup,

I realized that I was carrying too much weight,

  • I was still carrying the weight of Sam's food and gear,

    • And I didn't need the weight of SAM

  • But I then also realized that I was still carrying Byron, my Peter Pan

  • So Instead I continued the hike, 

    • I could still Go on an Adventures with my Best Friend, 

      • even if that Best Friend is only a kindred spirit in my heart.


The End



Notes for the Story Teller:

Scene List:

  • Catch: First Morning, Tent
  • Parties, Stereo
  • College, need for Adventure with Friend
  • Kindred Spirit, Peter Pan, Loss
  • Preparation for hike
  • Heat Stroke
  • Conclusion: carrying to much

Take Away:

  •  friends may not be on then same page

  • But if they are in your heart then you can still go on an Adventure