Running into other hikers on the trail is always so jarring.

I get that we are not so displaced from civilization, however turning a bend and finding another human staring back at me is absolutely rattling. I am an anxious person so obviously I’m like “they’re going to murder us.”

Today I happened to look back and through the thicket of dense trees I was displeased to find a young man (who I thought was wearing a trench coat… turns out I’m just lowkey crazy) coming straight for me.


Although instead of running for the fucking (woods)?? I simply said “hey” in my best please don’t kill me voice.

He didn’t kill me. He was strikingly kind and he had a pink water can. He offered to move the spider off the trail in front of me and he smiled very sweetly. We tried to pull him into our group but he decided to continue the journey alone and we lost him to the woods about 15 minutes after our initial encounter.

I kept asking myself over and over why he was in the woods? Alone? I realize now that it’s none of my concern. The trails have a way of grounding you. Of allowing you to find the most perfect calm.

They also have a way of pushing you, and pushing you, and pushing you, until you are sweaty, out-of-breath, and begging for water. Mercy.

If others need this in their lives who am I to ever question their reason for being there?

I walked into the woods today ready to conquer the obstacles set in front of me. I left body humming, legs quivering, steel drum banging in my chest.

And I was so grateful.

We are gearing up for our Smoky Mountain trip this fall. I can’t thank the universe enough for granting me this newfound love.



Leona View All →

30-something Mississippi queer. Bleeding heart with a soft spot for honesty and oversharing. Conquering corporate America and my own insecurities– one day at a time.

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