Oasis of hell.

There was a trail angel that lived close to the Pacific Crest Trail in southern California. His house was where the hikers stopped to rest and get water through a particularly hot, dry stretch of the trail. When I got to his house, another hiker in his yard, told me that the man was taking a nap. His house was covered in homemade signs that said stuff like “I hate everyone equally.? Some of the signs I didn’t understand. At the bottom of every sign was his name.

Since I had been hiking at night to avoid the heat, I laid down in the shade of a tree and went to sleep.

I woke up to an old big man standing above me. He said, “Who the fuck are you?? I introduced myself and he said, “Well, you better go inside and sign the fucking guest book.? I went inside and he gruffly and with many obscenities explained that his well pump was broken so he couldn’t offer hikers a shower and ice water like he usually would. There was a tank of water that we could fill our bottles for drinking but no washing. He told us to just shit anywhere, but not where he would step in it. There was a turd in a newspaper outside his garage.

He asked us to pay him five dollars each for the shade and drinking water. We all paid, filled our water bottles and hiked on.

A month later, I heard, he shot himself.

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Hermit, long distance hiker, primitive cabin dweller, seeker.

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