So… Damn… Psyched…

The other day I e-mailed Atlantic Brewing Company, telling them how much I loved their beer and the Mainely Meats barbecue, and pointing them to my post about it. I got response from Barbara at the brewery, thanking me and asking when they could expect me. I told her that I was thinking of coming up for a week or two ending on Columbus Day, and asking if they had any special events I should plan around. Today I got the following response.

Hello Hugh,

Columbus Day Weekend is a good one. Saturday is the Octoberfest in Southwest Harbor, and Mainely Meat BBQ participates in that too.

At noon on Sunday, there is a war canoe race on Long Pond to benefit the Muir Cancer Fund, which was started in honor of one of our former tour guides. They are always looking for more paddlers, if you would like to join in. After the race, all the canoeists come back to to the brewery for BBQ, and then at 3:00, weather permitting, we hold belt sander races in the courtyard (yes, the power tools; they race side by side in wooden tracks).

We look forward to seeing you.

Thank you,
Barbara
Atlantic Brewing Company
15 Knox Road
Bar Harbor, ME 04609

realale@atlanticbrewing.com
207-288-BEER (2337)

Are you KIDDING me?? Canoeing, beer and barbecue??? I’m not even certain I’m rated for such a surfeit of pleasure, much less deserving of it.

I found the following on a Bangor Daily News calendar of events.

Sunday, Oct. 10
At Bar Harbor, Long Pond, War Canoe Race, flat water, registration 10:30-11:30 a.m., $20 includes all-you-can-eat barbecue at Atlantic Brewing Company, noon start, call Tammy Kelly at 667-3947 or email tammykwh20w@hotmail.com

I sent Tammy an e-mail about the war canoe race. Then I found a site about last year’s Oktoberfest. It looks pretty sweet, yeah?

I dug around the Acadia website and quickly concluded that Blackwoods Campground was my best choice. I used the reservations site to find out that there are still around 200 sites at Blackwoods available for the weeks leading up to Columbus Day!

I looked at bus schedules and concluded that, although I’ll have to transfer from one bus route to another, getting from Acadia to the brewery and back should be fairly easy. However, the last bus back from near the brewery is at around 8:00 PM. That’s not late enough for an evening beer and barbecue outing. So I started thinking in terms of going out to the brewery in the middle of the day. This idea seemed better and better the more I thought of it, because I remembered that my eat-whatever-I-want days go best when I have strenuous exercise before and after my huge meal.

I found a calendar of sunrise and sunset times, and finally came up with my tentative plan: I’ll spend the two weeks ending with Columbus Day weekend hiking in Acadia, spending only $20 per night to camp right there in the park. I’ll get up at around 5:00 AM each day, grab a shower, load my pack, and hit the trail for three or four hours. I’ll hike north over Cadillac or Dorr or Champlain or whatever strikes my fancy. Then I’ll catch a bus, transfer to another bus, and hit the brewery for lunch. I’ll take buses back to Acadia in the afternoon, work off a good bit of lunch with more hiking, and then head back to camp at dusk.

This is what I needed: a reward to focus on that will get me through these last agonizing weeks at Goldman Sachs. I’m motivated now more than ever; in the next five or six weeks I’m going to condition, and be leaner and stronger when I hit those trails in late September.

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