Entry from Wesley
I'm feeling much better today. I'm back around people which makes a huge
difference. I looked in the yellow pages for a church to go to which is
a first. Usually, I just go to the church that I find. I found one that
I could easily walk to,the First Baptist Church of Chattanooga) and met
some folks (The Partridges. for real) right off the bat. I went in with
them and ended up having dinner and staying the night. And I'm sleeping
on a water bed (or is it IN a water bed?) Anyways, it's another first
for my trip. It's really hard to sit cross-legged on a water bed. The
Partridges have two kids that are 5 and 6 and they are a lot of fun. We
hung out and talked about toys and all that. It was a really cool contrast
to earlier in the day. I had met one of the ministers (Mary Jayne) of
the church and was invited to her house for Easter supper. It was her,
her husband, and her father who is 93 years old and still active. Hearing
his stories and thinking about how long 93 years is was really interesting.
We went and saw his apartment and talked about the flower beds h! e had
planted and was planning for the apartment building. He's the resident
gardener. I'd been praying for a few days that God would provide me with
a family for Easter and a place to rest. I actually, for once on this
trip, had very specific things that I asked for that I would either get
or not get. God povided everything and then some. So, for people who say,"praying
for a good day is a really subjective thing to ask for and can be easily
met if you want it to be and says nothing about the power of God",
this was very objective. The subjective part was that the people and places
which He provided were very enjoyable and the company was wonderful. God
meets need and then covers it in love cuz that's just the way He does
it, yo. A'ight, guess that's it for now. Yo, I'm the cat
with the coolest hat
and I did it like that! uh.
Oh wait, how could I have forgotten? When I stopped for lunch back in
Fort Oglethorpe, I saw a guy with a tattoo of a tractor. For real! Hey,
mom. I'm gonna get a tattoo of Mickey Mouse riding on a tractor.
today's post from Wesley also included an addendum to the 4/18 post, so
be sure to scroll down and catch up on yesterday as well.)
Journal Entry from Wesley
Well, now it's Saturday night.
It's hard to know where to start when I don't write until the end of the
day. I had a very cool walk through the Chicamauga battlefield today.
It was shady, quiet and educational. Just like me.
I came out of the battlefield right by Fort Oglethorpe (that's a town)
and had lunch. Ft. Oglethorpe quickly became Rossville which transitioned
into Chattanooga. I didn't actually see any sign for the state line but
the guy selling shoes and porn on the street assured me that I was there.
Yeah, it wasn't the best part of town I came in on. I stopped at a gas
station and got some ice cream. I talked with a few people there and everybody
kept warning me about a certain part of town I'd walk through(at 3 in
the afternoon). A man told me about the aquarium here and when my eyes
lit up, he offered me a ride there. Downtown here is really nice. Lots
of money. I got some information and free fudge at the visitor's center
then took the free shuttle to a Day's Inn. Which is where I am now. Then,
I went back to the aquarium and had a great time. I LOVE aquariums. They
had a seahorse exhibit and I watched the leafy seadragons for like 15
minutes. A girl and I talked about how watching them made our hearts beat
faster. It was seriously cool watching all of those animals. I love walking
because it's so peaceful but, watching them made me feel tears of peace.
I'm not kidding about loving aquariums. After that, I wandered for a bit
and talked with some kids going to prom. There were lots of them downtown.
I found a taco sports bar or something and had a dinner as big as one
of those anthills. I've decided another reason why I don't like cities.
They're lonely. When I'm in the country, I feel alone in a good way. When
I'm here, I just feel alone. Sitting alone in restaurants. I walk the
streets alone. I listen to other people's conversations and think of things
I would say to someone. Oh man, I'm sounding pretty depressing. I'm supposed
to be celebrating. I'm finished with Georgia. I must just be in a downer
mood because I miss Georgia.
I saw an ice cream truck today and bought an orange at a produce shop.
That was fun. I had a good day. Dead Poets Society just started and Robin
Williams just reminded me to seize the day. That makes me feel better.
I think I've been doing that. I don't know, maybe I'm just getting that
same freaked/bummed outedness mixed with excitement that I got before
I started. That, and being alone in the city really bites. I'm glad I'm
not a bag lady. Ok, I think my problem is that I'm trying to feel some
sort of closure or something and it's not happening. I just went for a
walk to relax and was reminded that I'm not walking to conquer states.
Borders don't matter. All it means is that there are different license
plates on the cars that pass me. I'm the same, God's the same (absolutely)
and people are still the same. I should probably just go to bed. I'm used
to 9:30 bedtimes in the tent.
Entry from Wesley
Wow, I had a great night. I'm
so glad that I got to meet Reed. He's a really neat guy. We talked all
evening until 11 and then hung out this morning for a while too. He told
me lots of stories about the area. Oh man, so much history. The kind of
stuff that's forgotten in cities. The house he lives in was built by his
dad from rocks that he dug and lumber that he salvaged from old buildings.
It was built during the war 41-43 and lumber was rationed. It's a beautiful
house on great land. I really hope I talk with Reed again. Now, I'm walking
on highway 151. There aren't any cities that I'm going through but there
are a few service stations. It's more direct and a beautiful walk. I'll
be to Ringgold tonight and Chattanooga tomorrow. That's right, Tennessee.
I'm really close to the state line. I wonder what I'll do to celebrate
my first state walked. The bad news is that I've been seperated from my
wonderful yellow hat. I forgot it at Reed's house amidst the excitement
of the morning. So, to anyone who's ever said, "Man, look at Wesley.
He always has it so together. I wish I could get a handle on things like
he has", sorry to let you down. But, I wrote a song about my hat.
It goes a little sumthin' like this:
Oh yellow hat,know that I loved
you I loved you just the way you were
Oh Yellow hat, know that it's true
I didn't want you to be red or blue
Well, dang it. Now, I
forgot the words. I'll see if I can remember them later. So now, I sat
down to lunch with Chef Boyardee and my "heavy-duty" can opener
cracked trying to open the can. Yep, it just broke right off! So, I'm
like, "Chef! Boy are yee dead!" Then I cut him open with a knife.
But still, what kind of can is this?
Okay, enough about that. Back on the road.
Wow, it's been an exciting day. I had another change in plans. Wait, fist
of all, I was kinda bummed about having to find and buy a new multi-tool
or at least a can opener when not even a mile after lunch, I found one
on the side of the road. The pliers don't work but it has a can opener.
How cool is that? Yeah, really cool is what I said too. We're so on the
same page, you and I. Ok, then I got to another country store and hung
out with some guys there for a while over snacks. We talked about the
area and they told me of another route to Chattanooga. It's pretty much
the same distance as the other route but takes all country roads and goes
through a park and historic battlefield(I think). Well, this whole area
was pretty much a battlefield at one point. It's been a beautiful and
quiet walk so far on this route. It's a gorgeous day. But, I have to try
and get to the feed store in Peavine community before it closes so I can
talk to the owner about a place to camp. I almost didn't make it to the
store in time. I got a ride the last mile from a kid named Matt that had
just picked up his tux for prom tomorrow. I got a can of soup and an RC
at the store and asked Jodi (the owner) about the area. All we came up
with was a church about a quarter mile up another road. So, here I am.
He said there were some woods behind the church but I guess he meant that
they had trees in the backyard. It's also surrounded by houses. So, I
went to the closest neighbor and checked to see if it was alright if I
camped there. He (John Godfry) invited me in. I finally got to use a bathroom
(none of the stores I went to had one) and we talked for a bit. I'm actually
staying on his yard now and it looks like it'll be a beautiful night.
Oh, and good news! A bit before I got to the country store where I changed
my route again, Reed caught up with me and gave me my hat. I got my hat
back and I got to see Reed again. Yay! So, then I changed the words to
my song so that they were about how much I love my hat in the present
tense. Yay, for my hat. When I got it back, I noticed that I walked faster.
I even did a little dance. Dang, I love this hat even if it does smell
weird. Guess that's all for today. Hopefully, the sheriff doesn't bother
me at all. Flashlights make it hard to sleep.
Second Journal Entry from Wesley
Location: In Transit
I remembered some of the words
to my song and made up some more-
Your reflective stripe
tells cars I'm there
and you cover up
my messy hair
with gore-tex and vents
you give my head air
Yellow hat, I must say
you're a pleasure to wear
I've spoken of function
but your fashion's great too
you light up lives
with your radiant hue
So, yellow hat know that I
even if you're weird smellin
I'm so glad I've got you
back on top of my melon.
I'm sitting in my tent thinking
about a lot. I can't believe I'm almost out of Georgia. If I could throw
a stone 12 miles, I'd be a stone's throw away. I was looking at the map
seeing where it doesn't tell me where I am and saw that if I had kept
going on 41, I would have walked to Damascus. But, I missed it. So, I
guess I'll just have to keep persecuting Christians. Haha.
I spent the evening playing with the neighbors dog. It was his choice.
He's a very very big puppy that rolls in puddles then jumps on me. Every
time I sat down, he'd flop on me and try to make out with me. I tried
explaining my stand there but he didn't seem to care. We played fetch
and wrestled. I had to wait for him to leave to sneak into my tent and
hopefully, he gave up and won't try to belly-flop my tent. Oh, and John
gave me a glass of sweet tea and we talked some more. Then he brought
out a big jar of ice water(and now I need a restroom again) and some snacks.
I love snacks. Then Jake(the dog) tried to eat my granola bar so I punched
him in the face and he seemed to like that. I'm not playin that game either,
Ok, I'm done for now.
Entry from Wesley
Location: In Transit
Good morning. That was a command. I'm taking a few moments in my tent to
pray and get myself prepared. I'm still kind of flustered from last night.
It started out as another clear hot night much like the previous two. And
it continued like that until 6am when it started raining. I certainly wasn't
expecting that so, I didn't have the rainfly on my tent. So, it started
raining right on me. I think this is a time when people would call me "not
a happy camper" and I would probably tell them to shut up. I got out
of my tent and got the rainfly on before it really got pouring and got everything
inside dried off.
I'm really really hoping and praying that was it for a while. I don't have
any idea about the road ahead. I don't think I'll be making it to any towns
on my map. I'm hoping for a gas station. It hasn't rained for a while now.
Now, for what all of this means to me. When I got back into my tent last
night, I felt like praying for a while. I was so pissed, I had to cool down
and vent to God. Then, I felt like I should read my bible some right then.
I turned to Ezekiel 34 and was reminded how I'd been acting the last couple
days. The trip had been becoming more and more about me and less about God.
Even less about the people I'm out to meet. I prayed for forgiveness and
asked for guidance. God was serious when he gave me the conviction to take
this trip with Him. Especially about the with Him part. Am I implying that
it's raining because of me? I'm not that egocentric. God just used it to
get my attention.
I'm settled down for the night. It's been quite a day. It stayed clear long
enough for me to get to Sugar Valley and get some breakfast at a little
store. Then, I walked and it rained for a while. Then, I walked some more
and the rain kept doing whatit does. So, in case there was any question
about which one I prefer between really hot or rainy, I got to do some comparative
analysis today. Yeah, rain is crappy. I'm trying to find something I like
about rain so it's easier to walk in but, so far the only thing that I've
found is it stopping. I love that. A truck stopped and asked me if I needed
a ride and I said thank you but no. The man then invited me to stop for
lunch 5 miles up the road at a group home for boys where he worked. I got
there just as everybody was sitting down and we all had some great lunch.
It was fun hanging out for a while. All "at risk" guys aged 14-17.
I even took a shower there and got rid of all that great dirt. The shampoo
I used smelled just like CremeSavers candy. I said goodbye to the group
and was back on my way. It had stopped raining but when I got out there,
the sky remembered what it had been doing and got back to it. It really
poured for a while.
Eventually, I got to Villanow and went to the general store. It's the longest
continually running store in the state of Georgia. It was built in 1840.
They even sell honey raised in town. I got a sandwich there and then met
Mr. Martin. After talking about a place that I might be able to stay out
of the rain. He knew of an old store house in town where he thought I'd
be able to stay. He gave me a ride there and introduced me to Reed Clements(he
owns the storehouse) and Reed invited me in to clean up and have dinner.
We ate Sonic and yes, I had a second shower. I'm giving that cleaning ahead
idea a shot. I'll be sleeping in his Jeep tonight with the seats laid down.
Another first. Reed is big-time hunter. He's hunted all over the world.
He even has a zebra rug that he shot. He shot the zebra not the rug.
This is a really historic area. The mountain behind us is still covered
in bullets from the Battle of Chicamauga. Also, the Clements family and
the Martin family are the oldest families in the area. So, there's some
history goin on. I think I'm taking a different route to Chattanooga tomorrow.
A route that I wouldn't have chosen on the map but is what the locals recommend.
They know better than the map. I should be in Chattanooga the day after
So, the newspaper, internet and television are divided as to what's happening
with the weather. I choose the tv because it says I'm in the clear. Newspapers
are for weirdos that like reading about yesterday. Oh wait, that's what
this post is. Forget I said all that.
So, it's been a great day.
Entry from Wesley
Happy Birthday, Eddie. If your
sister wasn't a fox, you'd be my favorite Barry. Just kidding. Now, I've
embarassed you on the internet!
I'm in Scottsville. Don't bother looking on the map, it probably isn't
there. I like it though. There's a diner with plenty of nice and interesting
people. It's great to be back in the country.
Today is another hot day with tons of sun. I was asked which one is worse
between really hot or rainy. Rainy is worse. I can find shade once in
a while when it's hot but when it rains, everything is wet.
I'm getting pretty tan(at least on the parts that face the sun). When
I take off my socks and squint, it looks like I'm still wearing socks.
But they have toes...so, Magritte's socks. And when I take off my watch
and squint, it looks like I'm wearing a sock shaped like a watch on my
wrist. Which is just weird because I don't think a sock can be called
a sock unless it's shaped like a foot.
Anyways, today is different than I planned. Apparently, I took a wrong
turn(without turning) last night and there weren't any signs telling me
that I was on the wrong road until I walked a couple miles this morning.
I'd feel embarassed about this if I didn't have a conspiracy to blame
it on. Look at the details! It's all there!
So, I'm on Highway 53 now heading towards Calhoun. I added a few miles
to my route but I figure I needed the exercise. It was worth it for those
woods last night. I even saw a rabbit run by my tent and could hear animals
all around me through the night. I think it might have been a full moon
too. And the coyotes were all crying. That crow had called all of his
friends to help wake me up this morning. What a guy. They were all so
loud. It's good to see that enthusiasm. I hear that Calhoun is pretty
big. We'll see when I get there. But, that means I need to get walking.
I'm in Calhoun now. That walk was quite nice. There are more clouds out
and the breeze is back. That makes it so much easier to walk. I'm seeing
all of the landmarks I was told about by the locals so, I know I'm on
the right route. This is the second closed gas station I've chilled at
today. I'm surprised by some of the weird stuff I find walking but even
more surprised when I keep finding the same things. I've found and bounced
4 rubber bouncy balls to date. I saw a fifth one but it was kind of buried.
Also, window screens. I don't know how many of them I've seen. How do
they get out here? All of the gloves make sense. They were just dumped
after some crime. Now that I stop to think about it, none of these things
are as interesting as when I first saw them. It must be the sun when I'm
I guess I'll make it through Calhoun today and find some woods. I'm not
sure what's after that but I'm not counting on much.
Entry from Wesley
Ok, I was trying to take a nap but these ants won't quit tickling my legs.
They even tried to get in my shorts. Brazen little ants. What kind of
guy do they think I am.
I figure I'm about 2 miles away from Adairsville which means very little
to most people but a big deal to me. Much like Mr. Wendal except with
miles rather than dollars.
I didn't get much sleep last night. I'm not sure what the problem was.
We'll see if I sleep better tonight.
I stopped this morning at an historic school house built for black children
in Bartow county. It closed in 1955 when an integrated school was built
and fell into disrepair. It was later restored and made into a museum.
The women there were very nice and gave me a personal tour and some cold
water. (They offered me coffee as well but I wasn't up for it)
It's quite hot today. I'm drinking plenty of water. We'll see how far
I make it today. My feet feel fine but I'm not well rested and, like I
said, it's hot. I'm working on getting used to walking in the heat. I
know there's plenty more coming.
Alright, enough shade. Time to get to Adairsville.
Well, I'm in Adairsville. It was more like 5 miles and I haven't had an
actual meal since yesterday around this same time. No wonder I'm so tired.
Anyways, I'm at El Nopal Mexican Restaurant. They just opened and if their
ability to seat large numbers of people is any indication of the size
of Adairsville (my chip crunching echoes), I guess there's a lot more
to come. But now, enchiladas.
Second Journal Entry from Wesley
I'm in the most beautiful woods
so far. I took a few pictures. Big trees all covered in vines. Lots of
undergrowth, a dried up stream bed, and clear areas covered by a trees
branches. I hiked maybe a quarter mile into the woods to get far enough
away from the cars. I'll hopefully sleep better tonight.
There's a crow here that is seriously perterbed by my presence...or maybe
that's just me being wesleycentric again and he just crows this much all
the time. It was true with the roosters.
Some people might wonder if I'm serious about how much I love walking.
Well, once in a great while, walking does get old. I know it's hard to
comprehend that anyone could get tired of it. I don't want this to be
taken the wrong way. I am definitely NOT tired of walking. So, any fine
young ladies waiting for me to give up so they can see this new chest
hair, forget it. I'm loving it. Anyways, Today, I wondered what I would
do if I did quit. It immediately occured to me that it'd be about 2 days
before I would want to be right back where I was walking. Maybe not even
2 days. Well, maybe if I slept for one of them. Man, I wish that crow
would give it a rest for a bit. Maybe I just reminded him how much he
loves to crow.
The mosquitoes aren't bad tonight. Fortunately, mosquitoes can't read
so me typing that won't remind them to bite.
I'm looking forward to the rest of this week. I'll be spending a couple
days walking through the Chattahoochee National Forest. That should be
cool. Then, Chattanooga. Those are fun names to say. Well, the crow was
gone for a while but ends up he just went to get his friend. Oh, those
crazy crows. I wonder if they even realize that they only caw one note
over and over.
Today, my being dirty got even better. Instead of dust and sand just sticking
to the dew, now it sticks to my sweat. I get gritty eyelids. Fun. Don't
worry, I'll wash soon...maybe. I can't get over how beautiful these woods
are. It doesn't even matter that there's tons of poison ivy and poison
oak and probably poison something else(I don't know. I think I flunked
Cub Scouts). Anyways, they're beautiful. Good night.
Entry from Wesley
I got a pretty early start
this morning. Some of the office workers got in early but apparently didn't
notice me. Fine by me. It was a beautiful 8 miles or so of country between
Acworth and Cartersville. I even found a little beach by a stream in the
I'm still working my way out of town. I don't really know how far it goes.
I'm resting in the irresistable shade of a big tree in a church lawn.
There's a gas station up ahead and then I don't know what. It was kind
of tough today getting back into a more country mode. I'll just do like
I was before Atlanta and walk until the day is ending. I thought I even
sensed myself worrying for a bit today. Ridiculous. Today I saw about
5 ant hills that were bigger than my head (Whoah, I don't like the thought
of my head being in an anthill). So, I don't feel so bad about those 2
anthills that I accidentally stepped on last week in the rain. They were
tiny compared to these today. Bad real estate, they didn't have much of
a future in that neighborhood.
Second Journal Entry from Wesley
I found my place to stay for
the night. I've still got some daylight, but I'm pacing it out to the
next town. I covered some good miles today. I'm in the woods behind New
Canaan Baptist Church. It seems good. Last night was not very restful.
The office (as well as all of downtown) was right next to the railroad
tracks. That's not so bad except that they don't have the arms at intersections
so the train makes its presence very known with lots of whistles all through
the night. When I was finished setting up my tent, I dicovered that just
on the other side of these woods are the railroad tracks. They're following
me (well, I guess that's a bit wesleycentric. Obviously, I'm unwittingly
Ok, I can't ignore it anymore. There's a little parade of bugs crawling
on me. A caterpillar and a cool beetle are exploring the new terrain.
This caterpillar is intent on getting on my face and the beetle is following.
Wait, maybe they're playing follow the leader. Well, when they get to
my neck, I'll flick one off and help the other one follow. They can play
somewhere else now.
I forgot to mention something kind of creepy today. Those woods this morning
with the little beach by the stream were also next to a home-made grave
and lots of random trash. Then, this bird started singing a weird long
tune in a minor key. Ooh, I'm getting the willies remembering it so I'm
gonna stop. eek.
These are some nice woods. The weather is so great. I got a lot of sun
today but now it's cool and shady. I also got dirty! My legs are brown
with dust and mud. I love it. I get all wet with the dew in the morning
and then all covered in dust. It's good to be dirty again. That'd be neat
if you could take a shower ahead of time but it just doesn't work like
I just realized as I was looking around tonight that it's been a week
since I stayed in my tent. Wow! Then I realized that I'm an idiot because
I didn't dry out my rainfly any of the chances I got this week. Doh. I'm
not gonna need it tonight for sure so it's draped over a small tree. I
won't make that mistake again.
It was a really busy week. Meeting new people all the time. It was kind
of weird adjusting to that for a while. Now, it's time to adjust back.
I almost became a city sissy. Whew, I got out of Atlanta just in time.
Now, I'm camped next to an animal skeleton. See? This place has real atmosphere.
Week 1: March 24th through March 30th
Week 2: March 31st through April 6th
Week 3: April 7th through April 13th
Week 4: April 14th through April 20th
Week 5: April 21st through April 27th
Week 6: April 28th through May 4th
Week 7: May 5th through May 11th
Week 8: May 12th through May 18th
Week 9-10: May 19th through June 1st
Week 11: June 2nd through June 8th
Week 12: June 9th through June 15th
UPDATED 5/19: NEW PHOTOS FROM WESLEY!