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Today I was the kid who had to walk six miles back and forth to school—uphill both ways.

Yes, it’s so easy to deceive oneself. While yesterday’s road may have been steep, today it seemed I was climbing uphill more than I was descending. Thus, the 17 miles I walked today was hard-fought, and my feet are complaining.

For over 2,000 miles I pushed a 78 lb. kart. Now I’m carrying a 23 lb. backpack. At this point I’m not convinced that one is any easier than the other.

The motel I’m checked into in Mount Storm is the only game in town and is reminiscent of the many other small motels I’ve stayed in. While it doesn’t smell from smoke, it appears that my neighbors will supply sufficient distractions.

Today I walked in West Virginia for a couple of hours, then passed through a portion of Maryland, and then (due to the vagaries of state borders) I was back to the hills of West Virginia.

As I passed a young man exiting his pickup, I asked if he had any extra water. As Patrick, a service technician for NeuBeam, filled my bottles, he told me his company installs cellular service. “If you need to get online, just walk over to that building over there. I’ll give you the password.” Thanks, Patrick!

If anyone is wondering why I chose Rehoboth Beach, Delaware as my updated final destination instead of Ocean City, Maryland, it’s because it’s one less day to walk. And I’ve walked enough.

17 miles today.

@ Mount Storm, West Virginia

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