I'm feeling extremely mellow. We had beautiful weather today so my hike around the park was very pretty and enjoyable. My beloved joined me, but he is feeling slightly under the weather so it may have been less enjoyable for him. However he enjoyed the hole in the wall Muslim pizza joint I took him to afterward. It was New York style pizza, $1.50 for a ginormous slice. I'd been there once or twice before but that was years ago. It popped into my head while we were walking and I was pleased to see that it was still there, and open on Sunday.
I say it's Muslim because the operators appear to be Muslim, the clientele seems to be largely Muslim, and there are Muslim-related posters on the wall. The food tasted distinctly American, however. :) Well, the food I had. There are kebabs on the menu, such as it is. It's one of those boards up on the wall with slide-in letters. Definitely low rent, but a lot of the best food comes from places like that.
After that we went to the REI next door and spent my 2010 dividend. I wasn't able to find any non-Keen boots that fit, and the Keens all have the same problem - the sole just doesn't last. I am spending a fortune keeping myself in boots over here. The sales guy suggested alternating pairs. He said it can take up to 24 hours for the foam in the sole to rebound after a day of wear. Doesn't sound totally unreasonable to me. It's not workable for a hike but maybe I'll do that at home. My hobbit feet just don't fit most boots very well so at the moment I think I'm stuck with Keens. I'll stay on the lookout for boots with wide toes, though.
I picked up a new, smaller Steripen as well. My old one still works, but only intermittently. I'm not sure if it's damp inside, has problems with the contacts, or what. I'm going to give it another go, though, with the newer model. It doesn't have a nifty display like my old one, but given that the nifty display started conking out after about 400 miles of trail use, it wasn't super useful anyway.
We stopped by MOM's for various organic, health-nutty type food, and then came home. Where I promptly conked out for several hours, still wearing my hiking clothes. Hope there were no ticks on them, because I was in the bed. I don't know what it is about hiking on weekends that makes me sleepy. Regular backpacking doesn't cause me to fall unconscious all the time.
JD made a really good dinner tonight, involving chicken and curry and veggies and coconut milk. I'm dehydrating a leftover portion now. I hope it rehydrates well, as I would *love* to relive this meal on the trail. While I was thinking about dehydrating, I went online and ordered some supplies. A new vacuum sealer to replace my old dead one, some dehydrated coconut milk, and a variety of meals and meal ingredients from Packit Gourmet. The thing that took me there in the first place was soy sauce powder, but I bought a variety of hard to find ingredients such as sour cream powder, vinegar powder, and worcestershire powder. I'm also trying their carrot salad. I watched Cody eat the stuff on the trail last year (slightly different recipe I'm sure) and it looked SO GOOD.
Rather than trying to find healthy dinners at stores along the trail this year, I'd like to make the majority of them at home and put them in maildrops. I seem to have an easier time with breakfasts and lunches. Dinner options at grocery stores are usually meant to be cooked (as opposed to adding hot water), and are usually heavy. I should be able to get a lot of yummy veggies into myself this way so I don't have as many cravings. Or, alternatively, I'll get to Monson and crave nothing but ramen. I guess I'll see.