I can keep going for $100 per mile

By Mir
August 4, 2006

Thanks mostly to the kind generosity of my readers (that would be YOU, people), I have exceeded my goal of raising $5,000 for the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

In fact, I’ve raised a cool $6,000 to fund further breast cancer research.

I cannot express how moved I am at how folks responded to the call to dig deep. Several of you (including the one who felt the need to push me up to $6k, saying “it’ll be easier for you to keep going, if you know that every single mile is $100!”) donated more than once. I know that even this is a drop in the bucket compared to what’s needed to TRULY make breast cancer history, but I am humbled to be even a small part of it all.

And a small part is what I am. A small part with a lot of gear. Where did all of this gear come from??

As you read this (written earlier, obviously), I am sleeping in what is probably a scary motel near Boston, on account of we have to be at the walk site at 5:30 AM sharp. FIVE. THIRTY. IN THE MORNING. Whose idea was this? Certainly not mine. You know where I like to be at 5:30 in the morning? Drooling on my pillow. And unconscious.

I’m worried about this weekend, truthfully. I am still exhausted from my last trip (good idea to do these back-to-back, no?), my actual training regime fell FAR short of my proposed training regime, I’m still dealing with some heat intolerance issues, and as long as I’m being honest…

… I hate to fail.

(I know this comes as a huge shock.)

And I know, I KNOW, that if I have to stop—if I am injured or become sick—that there is no shame in stopping. There is no failure if I go out and give it my all. INTELLECTUALLY, I know this. But EMOTIONALLY, I want to walk the entire 60 miles. I’m not sure I can do it, and I want to come back and tell you I DID IT. I want to push myself and go further than I thought I could.

And for $100/mile, I think I can. I hope I can.

But! Earlier today, I assembled all of my gear. And because I cannot take you all on the walk with me (I would love to, because how much fun would THAT be?), I thought you might enjoy having a peek into the packing process. Because honestly, I was all, “Oh, whatever, I need a sleeping bag and some nylon shorts” and the next thing I knew, something had exploded in my family room, leaving all manner of debris in its wake.

The first thing you need to do the 3-Day is an official walk badge. Mine is quite lovely, I think. Without this badge I am forever lost; I am no one, I have no tent, and—most importantly—I get no towels. The horror!

The next thing you need are good sneakers. These are my $120 Rykas that I bought for $22. I did it on a whim (because of the price) and they turned out to be absolutely amazing. Hopefully they will last me the entire walk.

But if the Rykas are unable to fulfill their full spokessneaker duties, the back-up sneakers will step up to the plate and carry on. These are the sneakers I trained in waaaaay back in February or so when it still seemed like a really good idea to go walking when it was 20 degrees outside. Ahem. Anyway, these sneakers suck, so I’m hoping I won’t have to wear them.

Next up is the ubiquitous pink ribbon hat. I prefer not to wear a hat at all—I rather like just tying a bandana on my head, because I’m just SO HIP—but it turns out that it’s really true, you stay cooler in a hat. So I wear a hat. My hat is currently sporting the Tinkerbell pin my children picked out for me at Disneyworld last week. At night when I’m in physical agony and missing the kids, I’m hoping that looking at Tinkerbell will still make me laugh.

The walk crew provides the tents, but we do have to bring our own sleeping bags and mats. I squished mine down in a giant Ziploc in a poor girl’s vacuum-pack facsimile, and then discovered that the mat doesn’t fit in my duffle bag. Whoops! It’s now in its own bag, on TOP of the duffle bag. Anyway, it’s good I have that sleeping bag, seeing as how the coldest it’s supposed to be this weekend is… 70 degrees. Hooboy.

[Digression: Look closely at the picture of the sleeping bag and mat in the large Ziploc. Do you see the emblem on the lower left? DO NOT PUT BABIES IN THE ZIPLOCS, PEOPLE. Everyone knows that babies should be wrapped in Saran.]

Of course, I can’t sleep without a pillow. My walk partner is the crafty sort, and so we have matching team power pillows. Isn’t that cute? I don’t really care as long as it’s comfortable, which I’m guessing that after being smashed down in my duffle all day, it’s not going to be.

Of course, I need 3 days’ worth of walking clothes. Check, check, and check! Notice that each bag contains two pairs of socks; one is in a smaller Ziploc to be stuck in my hip pack. That way, when we stop for lunch, I can change into fresh socks! Which I’m sure will be completely invigorating and make me want to get right back out there and walk another 10 miles!

I’ve got a bunch of other stuff packed too, of course. But at that point I started losing interest in the whole photo essay thing. I’ve got this in case I think of anything brilliant while we’re out there, given that I cannot blog and the lack of outlet for my random thoughts might cause me to implode, otherwise.

But, you know, if you need me? Just remember: I’m Mir, and you can find me in tent F34 this weekend. If I don’t die.

I’ll be back with a full report on Sunday night. Pray for clear skies and boundless energy, if you’re the praying sort. Or just keep your mutterings about my insanity to yourself. I’m aware.

[P.S. Are you going on your own adventure this weekend, or thinking about one? Check out this nifty little site that Nature Valley put together. Yeah, that’s right. The granola people. I’m going to be eating a LOT of granola bars this weekend. Go put a pin on the map or whatever while I’m SWEATING TO DEATH in the sun, it won’t kill you.]


  1. shannon

    walk well, dear mir. thanks, from the boobies.

  2. Cele

    I had so worried about the 60 mile thing, and was so glad it wasn’t me doing it. 60 miles, that’s like 60 times more than I ever walk in a week, let alone weekend. Then you said…and I quote…

    Which I’m sure will be completely invigorating and make me want to get right back out there and walk another 10 miles!

    Damn, those must be good socks! Ten in the morning and ten in the afternoon. That makes sense and sounds so much easier than a “60 miles trek. ” And I thought anew, Damn I’m glad it’s Mir and not me

  3. Carol

    A TAPE recorder?! Oh Mir, that is SO last year! Don’t you have an MP3 player that records?! Well…to be honest, neither do I. But you are way cooler than me so you of all people should have one.

    In any case — have fun on your walk. I know you’ll finish – don’t even sweat it!

    Good luck!

  4. Karin

    Good luck Mir. I have no doubt that you will make it.

  5. Gillian

    The Management has a deep concern for expens — uhm — the environment and our natural resources. If you share our concern and want to use the same grungy towel over and over and over again please keep it around your neck. If you are an uncaring worm and want an actual clean towel please throw your towel on the ground and stomp on it forcefully.

    Oh, yes Mir wear a hat, by all that is holy. Not just the heat but the sunburn of the face and the peeling of the nose is at risk here. And drink water alllllll the time.

    Yay, Mira!

  6. Gillian

    I gave you an extra a. Sorry, I have a lead finger.

  7. Julie

    I still get a little teary when I stop to think of the why’s and the how’s that started this for you…I love you and I love US and I’m really very blessed to call you my friend.

    I hadn’t been to your pledge page for a while…reading through all the donations…wow. It’s overwhelming..

  8. Mary Tsao

    That’s an amazing amount of money! Cool! I’m totally rooting for you and your poor little footsies. Owie in advance.

    You can do it, Mir!!!

  9. hollygee

    And thanks for the packing pics. Now when Otto calls to ask what you are wearing, you can say “Package #3 today.”

    Water and sunblock and rest whenever possible. S’okay to be tired out, but we don’t want you to collapse. ‘Cause then, what will we read? Hey, it’s all about us.

    Congrats on the money, honey.

  10. karen t

    I drank loads of water on my London Moonwalk but didn’t keep up the blood sugar levels. Left me feeling soooo sick afterwards.Remember to keep snacking/glucose tablets whatever. Go Mir!!!!

  11. Amy-Go

    You are going to make it and you will be – as always – amazing. GO MIR GO! I’m so proud of you.

  12. Vanda

    Go Mir. You can do it!

  13. Bob

    I wish you cool breezes and effortless miles. I can’t be there to cheer you on in person, but I will be there in spirit. So will Mom & Aunt Annelle.

  14. Katie

    At least our heat wave broke today. Or it better have! (Freaking summer…)

    Good luck Mir, you’ll do fabulous!

  15. Em

    Thanks from my currently healthy but high risk boobs. Hopefully, they will put that $6,000 to good use!

    I didn’t know you would be staying so close the night before (makes sense with a 5:30am start. Is the sun even up that early?). I’m very close to Boston! I would have made sure you had a hotel on the lower end of the scary spectrum and maybe bought you some carbs. You’ll need them and I just like them.

    I’m glad the weather broke just in time. Its going to be a beautiful weekend. I hope you have a great time!

  16. kim

    May the wind be at your back Mir!
    Make sure you snack as well as drink water. Too much water can throw your blood sugar levels out of whack!

  17. Ben

    Good luck Mir!

    And, if for some reason the going gets tough, just remember: this is so much better than cleaning your basement!

    (but not as much fun as “sealing your driveway.” Save a little energy, m’kay?)

  18. Aimee

    You are a ROCK STAR! Good luck, and I can’t wait to hear all about it.

  19. Stephanie

    I’m wearing my T-shirt today in honor of you. Go, Mir! Yeah!

  20. OneTiredMomma

    Good luck this weekend! You can do it!!

    Loved the tie dye shirt in package number three. Hehehe… I said “package”


  21. Daisy

    Go Mir! In honor of my mother and my dear friend SW, thank you for raising this money and raising awareness.

    For the heat: Keep a damp bandanna around your neck. It worked for my biker parents when they traveled in hot weather.

  22. Nic

    Wow, I am so impresed by your energy and determination Mir. Congrats on even starting this, I think you’re gonna do great! I’m pulling for you and can’t wait to hear all about it.

  23. Liz

    Congratulations and good luck — it’s supposed to be a gorgeous weekend and I’m sure you’ll look really pretty in your own special…sun-shiney way, of course!

  24. bad penguin

    Good luck with the walk, Mir!

  25. Susan

    You truly are a rock stay. I’m wearing MY pink ribbon hat for you, and will be all weekend.

  26. Amy

    Good luck with the walk! Can’t wait to read the update.

    I had a look at the Nature Valley website. I love how all of the roads to Canada stop at the border. :) Oh well, guess I can’t add my place in.

  27. Dea

    I’m delurking, to say yay! Annd good luck! I”m sure you will do fine. Also? The baby thingy on the ziplock, ha!

  28. And Baby Makes Four

    Reading with interest, because I was going to do the Seattle walk this year, until I had to have my hysterectomy. Stiches in your perineum and walking 60 miles don’t mix. Can’t wait to hear what your experiences of the walk will be!

  29. jess

    good luck! walk hard, stay hydrated. have fun. it’s an awesome thing you’re doing.

  30. Her Bad Mother


  31. She-ra

    Good luck! I did an 11-mile walk in April. That was long enough. I can’t even imagine doing a second shift in the same day much less 60 miles in a weekend. I have faith that you can make it.

    Loving the tape recorder… I am on a month-long road trip with my kids and I keep a notebook with me so I can jot down random thoughts while driving (sounds safe, right?) so that I can blog them later when I get internet access!

  32. Mom Nancy

    Go Mir! You just popped into my thoughts, so I had to come and say Hey.

  33. InterstellarLass

    Good luck! You can do it! One foot in front of the other. That’s all you have to remember!

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