There’s a saying in the A.T. Community that “the trail will provide.” Trust that things will work out. While this aphorism runs counter to Knock’s usual methods of stressing out about everything, we’ve never seen it proven more true than this weekend. Team Pie’s original plan of getting a much-needed shower at a hotel in Daleville was thwarted, as every hotel citywide was at capacity for Liberty University’s graduation. Just when we thought we were out of options, and were resigning ourselves to a showerless, laundryless fate, we saw a sign in the window of the local outfitters. Two 2011 SOBO thruhikers were offering a stay at their home in exchange for trail stories. (Fortunately, that is one resource we have in abundance.) The manager at the outfitters put us in touch with Lindsey “Sanka” and Will “Bone,” who came from Roanoke to pick all five of us up. There was a momentary double-take from all parties upon meeting, as we had seen each other earlier as Lindsey and Will trekked a bit down the A.T. on their lunch break. We recognized them as “the people who had the Subway sandwiches.” They recognized us as “those hikers who were talking about Lord of the Rings.” And thus Team Pie was whisked off to a magical, fun-filled weekend at Lindsey and Will’s (stunning, restored 1905 Victorian) Roanoke home. With board games, shared meals, lots of Trail Talk, and a tour of downtown Roanoke, Team Pie ended up with a fabulous, relaxing zero. And some pretty awesome new friends. Lindsey and Will: our gratitude can’t be contained. We take comfort that you guys can appreciate our feelings of joy and rest in your home, having been stinky thruhikers yourself. Thank you and Happy Trails! — Knock Lindsey and Will’s adorable dog Sherpa. He was a thruhiker too! Knock at the koi pond on the green roof of Roanoke’s city center. This was preceded by chicken and waffles and a walk through the farmers market. Burnout, Scout and Hobbits play one of several games of “Cosmic Encounters,” a favorite of Lindsey and Will. Apparently Burnout won a lot. Cooking proper, fresh food was a real joy after months of Lipton sides and tortillas. Pasta with meat sauce, garlic bread and kale salad with avocado and Brussels sprouts. Lindsey and Will at supper. Group selfie on the porch.

Published on May 13, 2015