With deep shame and regret we present ourselves to you, tail between our legs, heads bowed down in embarrassment fearful to look up and meet the judgment in your eyes. Our knees shake, our palms are sweaty, our brows knitted with a internal humiliation that cannot be swayed. We know we can never ask for your forgiveness, we only ask for you to listen to our story. A story that will never compensate our failure, but a story that will show you our deepest regret and sorrow. Our failure to uphold a simple promise. A promise to you. A promise to ourselves. A promise broken.
As you can see we had so many chances to stay true, stay strong...but we were weak!
We did not eat 4,833 boiled eggs on our North Country Trail Thru-Hike last year. The disgrace and dishonor we feel by just blatantly saying it makes us want to go run and hide, inside of a pickling jar. A pickling jar of our own making, that we call our own emotions. They have fermented for the past two months, as the apology we owe all of you, has been canned inside. We hoped that we could move on, gloss over this giant crater in our hearts, yet time was not the healer of all wounds in this scenario, instead the crevice only got deeper and darker. Bottomless and fathomless we have been perpetually falling, we need to find our bottom, so here it is. We did not eat 4,833 pickled and boiled eggs this year, and for that we are eternally sorry.
Let us go back. Back to when the idea was just an infant in our poorly constructed hiker brain. Back when we had thousands upon thousands of miles to increase our consumption and our "pickled egg per mile" average. Back to New York. Only two weeks into our NCT thru hike, our giddiness and excitement led to many deep philosophical questions about life, existence, the universe. It was in one of these such conversations we found the answer to our current temporal existence. We were put on this trail, upon this earth, upon this place in time with a job, a responsibility and a privilege. It was to consume enough pickled eggs to the point of transcendence. You know the chicken and egg dilemma? Which one came first? Well, we had found the universal origin of this question, the dilemma of which came first the pickled hiker or the pickled egg? We would quest to find the answer, for ourselves, for you, for the good of the world!
As the miles began to melt beneath our feet, we were quickly out of the state of New York. The tally was grim, we had only consumed 6 pickled eggs for 750~ miles. The job ahead of us now was tougher, to be sure, but not yet insurmountable. Our bodies and mind would just need to be fueled efficiently with eggs. 4827 eggs left, 4083 miles. Slightly over and egg a mile, not easy, but do-able. Yet, the siren call of sandwiches, pizza, fried chicken, and other consumables became our sins. We would heed their call, and forgo the job set before us. We succumbed to their temptation and we have vowed never again to be lost within our weakness.