Tuesday, June 9, 2015

State Line to Marshall

We walked all morning up and down the hills to Hot Springs, a tourist hub and a stop for travelers of the AP (Appalachian Trail). I parked the World and Nice(the dog) in the shade, across the road from the general store where I went in for some coffee. When I came out, the man from the rafting outfit next door and a woman who had drove up were there by the World taking pictures. We were parked next to the antique and novelties store, the World was tied to a big chair. The woman's mother had seen us up the hill coming into town and called her to come see us. She offered to take me to the van at the border. The man told me where there was public parking a few blocks away, he watched the World while I was gone and so did Nice.
It being a crossing of the AP, the rafting guide asked how many more miles I planned to get that day and told me of a store over the next mountain just four miles away. " Two miles up, two miles down." AP hikers go twenty miles and more each day so I guess the man expected I was all about the miles. I am not. Nevertheless I took his recommendation Nd re packed my gear for a hot afternoon stroll. The steep hill going up, the hot sun and a sudden rain made for a day filled with shade breaks and shelter under trees.
When we made it to the store the couple who owned the place happened to be going to Hot Springs after they closed and were both willing to give me a ride and let me stay in the parking area. I parked next to the Ice cream van. When the couple, Matt & Jemima, were dating she was looking for a daily-driver for school, "...like a Subaru. He bought me the ice cream truck... So I married him..."
The next morning I left very early to roll up the higher hill over to Marshall. I was grueling work but with little traffic before daylight I made it up the worst of it without any traffic when I approached Marshall It had been recommended I go into downtown and not stay on the bypass. The road down to Marshall was narrow. winding, with steep grades and blind turns. The speed limit was twenty mph, which saved me a lot of dodging with nowhere to go. Finally at the bottom I was in historic Marshall. There I met a couple who were sightseeing, we walked the Main Street together, had a latte', window shopped and when they took me back to the van on there way to Hot Springs we took Hill Road to see some of the pretty homes built on the hillside lane that meandered like a snake up from the river floor.
I came back down to Marshall's downtown by another road and reconnoitered two more before deciding to transport the ball back up to the new Marshall on the Bypass. I asked to stay at a suitable business and inflated the World to ready myself for an early morning start.

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