Posted by: davepidgeon | June 24, 2009

Sanford returns but not from A.T.

The South Carolina press for several days now camped out at several lean-tos along the southern stretches of the Appalachian Trail, many scratching fresh bug bites but happily preparing dinner to be consumed inside their tents – Bears? We have bears in the south? – waiting for a glimpse of the rugged Gov. Mark Sanford hauling his internal frame pack. The Republican governor’s spokesman had said Sanford was backpacking the A.T. for several days, a disappearance that caused a media uproar because he didn’t tell anyone, even his wife, where he was going; he just vanished.

Turns out the press was in the wrong place – they weren’t ACTUALLY hiding in the lean-tos for Sanford, but you know, I love the thought. From CNN.com:

Gov. Mark Sanford did not spend the last five days hiking the Appalachian Trail — as his staff had indicated — but was instead in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the South Carolina Republican told The State newspaper Wednesday.

Spotted returning from the trip in the Atlanta airport Wednesday morning, Sanford said he had considered hiking the Appalachian Trail after his state’s busy legislative season came to end but instead decided on a more “exotic” trip.

“I wanted to do something exotic. It’s a great city,” said Sanford of his five-day getaway that appeared to leave his entire staff and family in the dark about his whereabouts.  Sanford also said no one else accompanied him on the trip.

Yeah. He took a solitary trip to Argentina, not the Appalachian Trail. I can’t fault him. I haven’t been to Argentina, but I hear things. Sounds like a slammin’ place to get some escapism, which I’m sure Sanford is wishing for right now that he’s home facing an angry and curious press.

Not to mention the sharp eyes of Mrs. Sanford, who told CNN she still didn’t know where he was.

At this point, I could care less about the political ramifications and Sanford’s embarrassment. I’m more intrigued about a governor who takes off on a solitary five-day trip to Buenos Aires and subsequent road trip down the Argentina coast, to go incommunicado to even his wife. What was the motivation? Who did you meet and what did you see? That’s stuff out of a Jimmy Buffett album.

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