July 17, 1998

7/17/98 Haverhill, NH

8.0 miles (1763.9 total)

Even drinking all that beer, I was up and out on the trail by 7:30am. But there was no way I was going to make the post office in Glencliff by 10am. The weather was overcast, so it was hard just to slow down and relax.

The post office was ½ mile from the trail and Warren was another 4 miles. Martin and Melanie, the Quebec tourists I met in Hanover, had been hitch-hiking for over an hour. Melanie was complaining that she had drunk bad water and had gotten sick. I ended up walking to the post office.

Michigan Plowboy and the Quebec tourists talked a man in his yard into giving them a lift into town. He pulled over and I joined them. Martin and Melanie went to a campground while Michigan and I stopped at the deli for lunch. Michigan ended up talking another guy who wasn’t even going our way, into taking us back to the post office.

Met Rainman, a southbounder. Because he beat his mail drop to Glencliff, he decided to call and stay at Roger’s "House of Weather". Because I was only planning on going to the shelter a mile away, I decided to join him.

John picked us up at Glencliff and drove us the 11 miles to Haverhill, "the most sophisticated hamlet in the Northeast!" according to Roger. He has been taking in thru-hikers for 25 years, all at no cost. Our beds were mattresses up in the attic, above the AT Hikers Pub (with a 36 foot mural of the trail). We had an elegant dinner with real china and crystal. Then went for a swim in the pool. Plus Roger had a fridge by the pool stocked with liquor, wine, beer and pop. Later, while Rainman and I tried to write in our journals, John kept bringing in more beer. He asked a lot of questions "why" we hike. Didn’t get to write much and finally went to bed.

Roger gave us a tour of his "Museum of Weather", a collection of weather exhibits about some of the USA’s worst storms and disasters. One very neat thing he had was the hand-drawn German weather map of Europe for D-day. Right now, he’s thinking of moving it to New York so more people can see it.