Thursday, July 2, 2009

Argentina to Buy Section of Appalachian Trail

Argentina to Buy Section of Appalachian Trail

By Bill Britton

To accommodate its country’s avid hikers, Argentina has offered to buy part of the Appalachian Trail. During a press conference at Government House in Buenos Aires, President Cristina Fernandez, who met last week with South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford, said: “The benefits for both countries are tremendous. On the one hand, people like Governor Sanford won’t have to escape to Argentina to pursue their active lifestyle. On the other hand, Argentine hikers will have a lovely tool to satisfy their hiking needs.”

Maria Belen Chapur, Sanford’s frequent hiking companion, was equally enthusiastic: “The governor’s schedule is very demanding, and after a day of hiking with me, he’s exhausted. By having part of the Appalachian Trail under Argentine sovereignty, I can come and go as I please. Plus, the governor won’t have to use his frequent-flyer mileage or taxpayer money to pursue his favorite hobby.”

Said the governor’s wife, Jenny, “He can hike all day, if he wants. I haven’t hiked with him for years, and don’t intend to. He’s admitted to having a bevy of hiking companions, which is OK, as long as I don’t have to wash his dirty shorts.”

Final details are yet to be worked out, but since none of the trail lies in South Carolina, the section from Ball Mountain to Greasy Mountain in Georgia is a likely candidate. “I get into Georgia to hike as often as I can,” said Sanford. “Some of my fondest memories are of slogging through the bush near Ball.”

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