I’m sitting in the business office of our apartment building, listening to Nicole walk us through the process of breaking our lease. Bjorn and Ting are sitting next to me in the office. It’s early February and they’re leaving soon to travel around Asia until the end of the summer or so. We’ve decided not to keep the apartment; I’ve decided not to stay in Detroit. This is not what what I had in mind.
It’s been six months since my dad showed up to our apartment towing a familiar orange trailer. I’ve been living at home and working for the Cook Family Foundation, which has given me the blessing of time - time to rest, time to heal, time to pray.
Fall is coming, though, and that season is ending. There is a restaurant to open, a non profit to support, a church to serve, and a new life to build. It’s the end of the beginning and there are new choices to make: choices like where to live and how to make a living. I’m starting a new job at the hospital in September, which feels like my first real step toward making those important choices.
It's a milestone - one that I want to mark with intention and reflection.
And so ...
Before I start work at the hospital next month, I am going to walk from Owosso to Ann Arbor to visit my friend Ben. My plan is to walk the 80 mile trip in 6 days, camping out in the back yards of generous strangers.
(I’m also planning to live blog the trip, posting pictures and stories as I move along.)
This is where you come in. I was hoping that you could loan me one of three things:
Gear, Back Yards, or Sage Advice.
Here’s what I think I’ll need, though this list may expand as the Sage Advice comes rolling in.
1. One Hiking Backpack A small one ideally that would fit my 5’2” petite self. 2. One Sleeping bag A camping sleeping bag that rolls down to be carried via backpack. 3. One Sleeping mat Those gorgeous bits a plastic and air that keep you off the ground and remarkably warm. 4. One Tent A small one or two person tent that can be carried via backpack. 5. One Stove + One Pot A camping stove and a little pot to use on top of it.
I’ll be leaving on August 25th and I've planned out my trip in 8-10 mile daily increments with stops scheduled in each of the following towns:
(Here's a map of my planned route.)
August 25th: Corunna, MI August 26th: Durand, MI August 27th: Byron, MI August 28th: Howell, MI August 29th: Pinckney, MI August 30th: Dexter, MI
Do you or anyone you know have a back yard to lend me for a night in any of these communities? I can adjust my trip based on available hosts, so any yard roughly along this route from Owosso to Ann Arbor would be much appreciated.
And finally …
I’m sure there are lots of things I’ve haven’t thought of, so if you have hiking experience or are just generally good at predicting and avoiding disaster, I would love to hear your advice.
To respond to any of these requests you can comment here or on Facebook, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text me at 989 413 2523.
Thank you for your help!