Thursday, November 29, 2018

Maryland Rocks: Part 13 - Goodbye to the Cult Farm

It was really nice at the 12 Tribes Hostel and I'd say the only fly in the ointment, was my midnight journey to the bathroom. One thing pretty cool, for a guy anyway, is when I'm camping I just have to take a few steps out of the tent to the nearest tree. At the hostel, I took one step out the door of our 'cabin', being careful not to wake the others and found a full moon lighting the world up. I had vision of somebody catching me taking a leak in the cow pasture and then the group has a trial where it is decided whether I needed to spend a week in the blocks or a flogging was called for. Instead, I did the long walk to the bathroom building, which was still toasty warm. I almost spent the rest of the night there, but finally decided I needed to get back in my sleeping bag.
In the morning, Paul and I decided to try and find their little market that supposedly had the world's best muffins. Unfortunately, I was following directions from country people "It's over there on the other side of the 'holler'". I should have used Google, and I might have been able to describe the first taste of a organically grown muffin. However, Paul and I did find one of the oddest things on the trip. Not 100 yards away from this old farm, with chickens and cows and farm machinery about, was a little highway that was bumper-to-bumper full of traffic like the worst day on I-4 in Orlando. There were fumes, there was honking, there were BMWs trying to ride down the shoulder of the road. It was surreal that these things that were so different, were right next to each other, and yet, that explained the success of the market. In a town where you couldn't make money selling vegetables, you could make money selling coffee-to-go.
That reminded me...a constant on these backpacking trips to small towns in the mountains..if anyone out there thinks that Dunkin Donuts is on the ropes and can't compete with Starbucks, they have not been to these small towns. There wasn't a single time we passed a Dunkin Donuts that there wasn't a mile long line in the drive throughs.

In the end, breakfast was scrambled eggs and rice in the kitchen of the hostel. In a really nice surprise, the young woman with the 4 kids to feed the night before shepherded us into a giant kitchen and set us down at a countertop and fixed us right up. She even pulled out a secret stash of sea salt and after a good bit of that, I was in heaven...except they don't drink coffee, so I had some kind of tea that had no caffeine. I was okay, because I remembered the pot of coffee that they kept for the hikers in the bathroom area and could get that later.
What was amazing about the kitchen area, was while it was large and country-looking, it had serious industrial hardware in it. It was becoming apparent, that while these folks were living a minimalist lifestyle, they weren't poor.
I kept wondering when the pitch would come to donate some money to the 12 Tribes, and I did have some cash, so the main question on my mind was, how much would I give? As it turns out, we never even had the chance. One of the men loaded us all up in a van, with some of the kids and drove us back to the trailhead. They laughed and waved as we walked into the woods and I was left with the feeling that I couldn't have been more wrong about these nice people. Meanwhile, Paul was grumbling that he could finally have a cigarette and now he was never going to get a fountain coke. He was really bummed out about the lost opportunity to debate the leader and even worse, there had been no evidence that those guys were getting fat at the public trough. All was not lost though. We were hiking back to Harper's Ferry and eventually the same hotel. Perhaps the 'Snowflake' lady was still there with her dog and her Prius and Paul could show her the error of her left-wing politics...yes there was still hope..

No comments:

Post a Comment