Monday, November 25, 2013

Big Mistake!

Yesterday, Sunday, was one of the recurring "continuing hikes" on the towpath.  It was in the area beyond Hancock, MD called Cohill Station- that was a station on the now defunct Western Maryland Railway.  It was also very very cold. 

I carpooled with my friends in Pat's car.  We waited a few minutes for a man who'd said he was coming but sometimes he says that and then doesn't show up.  This was one of the no-show days.  While we waited, however, we chatted with a woman who was waiting for her son's Scout Troop to arrive by bike.  They'd been camping at one of the hiker-biker campsites downstream and were going to stow their camping gear in her SUV and continue on up the towpath.  Boy, were they loaded down with gear when they arrived.

All of which, of course, meant that my friends and I were standing around in frigid (25 degrees) weather.  I realized that it was a little hard to breathe and wrapped my scarf around my face.  And so we began walking and talking.  I began dropping back, being a rather slow walker.  My friend slowed down with me.  She knows how breathless I can get.  This was really worse than ever.  I finally had to admit that I'd been overly ambitious about my ability to deal with the very cold air.  I needed to stop, turn around, and go back to the car.  No intention of going anywhere - just wanting to get out of the wind.  Did I forget to mention the wind?  It blew in gusts, unexpectedly. 

With her car keys in hand, I walked back - - probably three-quarters of a mile.  Got into the car, used my pack as a pillow (not a very satisfactory one) and took a nap.  The car was parked in sunlight so it didn't really seem very cold.  Eventually I was startled by a tapping on the window - - they were back and I'd been asleep for about 2 hours.  Good grief, that's a long time.

We all went back to Hancock and had late lunch at Weavers and headed back East.  I was home by about 4 p.m., very tired, with a funny voice.  Could the cold cold air have affected my vocal cords?  It's still a little funny today.  I've another medical appt. tomorrow morning; we'll see what the doc. thinks.

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