Cats Don’t Twiddle Thumbs

Staying busy, waiting out the summer heat. It’s just soooo hot I haven’t been able to bring myself to hike. Also, this gets in the way:


My surface area is at maximum catpacity.

I’ve been taking care of my sunflowers, babysitting, eating mutant cherries, and I almost caught a cicada molting but I was too late.

My brother-in-law was in town so we wandered Houston doing Texany things he can’t do at home in London… House of Pies, Cactus Music, James Turrell’s “Midnight Epiphany” Skyspace, Moon Tower Inn … and kolaches! For non-Houstonians, that’s deliciously greasy food, vinyl records, and an art installation. Three of my favorite things! Oh and my very awesome (and not just because she reads this) mother-in-law had some credit at a bookstore that’s closing shop so she picked up some hiking books for me. Thank you. I can’t wait to read them. My husband has vetoed the triple crown idea already but I think we just have to make sure our marriage survives the AT first. :)


Skyspace at Rice U

hiking books

Hike hike hike hike hiker hiking hike.

The books were gifted with perfect timing. I just finished Grandma Gatewood’s Walk and need something new to sink my brain into. I knew Emma Gatewood was the first solo female thru-hiker of the AT but I didn’t realize just how tough she was. I should’ve but I didn’t. I also didn’t know she completed the AT three times AND walked the Oregon Trail. Women make up a fourth of the total hike completions reported to the ATC but to be a female thru-hiker in 1955 was a whole other thing. To be a 67-year-old solo female thru-hiker in 1955, well, that’s just crazy talk! After reading some of the things she survived before her hike, there is no doubt in my mind that she could survive anything and everything the AT could throw at her… and with a smile on her face… ya know, when she wasn’t busy whacking photographers over the head with umbrellas. I may have shed a tiny tear but you’ll never be able to prove it.

This weekend: engagement party, more babysitting, and escaping a room by figuring out clues and solving puzzles at the Houston Escape Room (it’s like mystery dinner theater for introverts but without the mystery, dinner, and theater). Next weekend, we’re knocking Fort Parker State Park off the list. It’ll still be super hot but if it gets unbearable I figure I can at least throw myself in the lake. Until then…


Wishing we were camping…


5 thoughts on “Cats Don’t Twiddle Thumbs

  1. It’s so good to see your reaction to Grandma Gatewood’s accomplishments. Ben Montgomery’s book really shines a light on all she did. I just wanted to let you know that we at Eden Valley Enterprises, FilmAffects and WGTE/PBS are working on a larger project to document Emma’s life. We’ve already completed a storytelling program (with companion e-book and DVD) and a one-act play about her and the last part of the project is a PBS documentary! You can find more information about the whole project at Emma sure didn’t sit around twiddling her thumbs — by the time she died she’d hiked some 10,000 miles all between age 66 and 85!


  2. I met Grandma Gatewood’s daughter at the 75th ATC anniversary. Wonderful to hear her tell the story and actually be able to touch some of Grandma Gatewood’s journal. Amazing woman!


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