Second, the next Post Hike Update blog will not be until later this week. Papa Chip, Chipmunk and I will be taking some much needed time with family over the next few days.
Third, I will be starting the healthy weight loss adventure on 11-12-13, (November 12, 2013). Check here for more about that on 11-12-13 (don't you love that date!). In the meantime, feel free to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) healthy recipes, exercise options and ideas for active adventures.
Fourth, my apologies that I didn't get this update published sooner. We've run into some technical difficulties but are working to resolve them.
After breakfast, we gathered the last of our belongings and headed to the front desk to check out. Once we confirmed that we didn’t owe anything, we headed out the front doors of the beautiful Mount Washington Resort. A cold breeze met us and made me shiver a moment. I suppose it was also part of our transition back to regular life. We walked to the Chip Mobile which looked starkly out of place in the parking lot … but then again, there are few places where the Chip Mobile looks “typical.”
We climbed in the cab and Papa Chip started the truck. It started right up … which for a 20 year old truck, is always good! When a bad noise also started up, we were keenly aware that we were no longer in the lap of luxury. The fan works intermittently and, basically, it’s old … and sounds like it’s old. It usually “levels out” once we get going.
We drove south thru New Hampshire and Massachusetts. After a couple hours on the road, Papa Chip pulled into a McDonald’s so I could post the blog and so that the truck rear could cool down. We had a couple of sandwiches and drinks before hitting the road again. We drove towards my home state of New Jersey but I would not make it all the way to my mom’s home that evening.
We drove for a few more hours, pulled into a rest area to let the truck rear cool down, use the restrooms, walk the dog, etc. Soon, we were back on the road and close to our destination of the evening: a meeting up with two very special men, one of whom is Chipmunk’s #1 Fan (self proclaimed, of course!).
We pulled into the parking lot of the restaurant and Chipmunk climbed into the camper to grab one last item before we headed in to meet up with Leo Walker and Tom Kennedy of Hike for Mental Health. When we gave our names at the entrance, the hostess said, “One of you just broke a record, right?” I do believe Tom tells more people about my daughter’s accomplishment than I do … and I have a whole website about it! But, I love him for it. He really “gets” what we do.
We met Leo for the first time although he and I have talked on the phone and exchanged emails as we set up Chipmunk’s relationship with Hike for Mental Health. He is a wonderful man and was very kind to us as Chipmunk defined why she wanted to promote Hike for Mental Health: to help teens struggling with the stigma of mental health issues.
We all sat together around the table and Tom could hardly wait to give Chipmunk the first of many items he brought with him to dinner. He gave her a HUGE bag of candy, likely leaving the local CVS store with little or no candy left for the moms and dads stocking up for Halloween Trick of Treating. Needless to say, Chipmunk LOVED her new stash of treats!
Before the appetizer arrived, Tom and Leo gave Papa Chip and me our very own Hike for Mental Health shirts … Niiiiiiiiice! We, too, believe in all that Hike for Mental Health does.
Once all the gifts were exchanged, all the food eaten, and the drinks emptied … we still lingered and talked and laughed. It was such a wonderful evening and we all truly appreciate the kindness and support we’ve gotten from Tom, Leo and all of the Hike for Mental Health members and hikers!
Hmmm, I wonder when Chipmunk will sign it. We all hugged and wished each other well and then Papa Chip, Chipmunk and I piled into the cab of the truck and waved good bye to our treasured friends. We drove a short distance and found our camp spot for the night. When I finally crawled into my bunk for the night and thought about all that the day held, I felt so good. My friend, Tom K., often says that he is a “better person for knowing” certain people. Tom, I truly aspire to be as good a person as you are. By knowing you, I feel like I get much closer to that goal. You are funny and kind and honest; you talk from the heart and you are often “dead on” about the state of our world. You are rare. Thank you for being you and for being a big part of all of this.
Thanks again for all your support,
Mama Chip, Papa Chip, Chipmunk and her dog, Chocolate Chip
(Tammy, Jay, Neva and Coco)