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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

To go, or not to go

Yesterday was a laid back morning. Not much going on. Pretty much finished with real work here and surfing the web. We went to lunch at the small local sandwich shop where I go every workday. I got a bowl of really good chicken mushroom soup, which I had gotten a cup of the day before. Then, while walking back into the building from the parking lot it happened. I got extremely sharp chest pains in my left breast area. I held my breath waiting for the pain to subside. It didn't. I kinda curled my shoulder around and protected the area with my left arm. It still hurt, a lot. I stopped walking completely. The two women with me stopped and looked back. I slowly got into the building, and the pain was still sharp. They had me sit down. The pain started to not be breath-taking sharp, but still was there. We found my team lead and he asked what I wanted to do. What I wanted was for him to make that decision. I'm over 50. But I have no prior history of heart disease, or any family history of it. I don't smoke, don't drink alcohol very much and I'm 115 lbs. But it hurt like hell. Co-workers gathered, looking concerned and waiting for me to make a decision. I couldn't decide, couldn't come out and say, yes, lets go to the ER. I had them page the Unit's medical guy. He made the usual comments, that I should go to the ER, that time was an issue. I asked about secondary symptoms, none of which I had. The pain had backed off a bit, but still hurt way more than it should have 20 minutes after it had started.

I ended up going to the ER. Two co-workers dropped me off on their way to another errand. I said I was fine to stay alone, and walked into the ER. One of them stayed until I was acknowledged, and then left reluctantly. They got me in quickly, on a heart monitor, gave me an aspirin and then something else to help my stomach, even though I said I didn't need it. While drawing blood the technician said I seemed dehydrated. I stood for the chest x-rays. Then I catnapped on the gurney in the ER room for a couple of hours waiting on the results. The two co-workers stopped back. I said that I was ok, the pain was gone since the aspirin, and they should just go on. When they turned me loose from ER the diagnosis was inflamation of the cartilage between my ribs and breastbone. I went to the waiting room to call for a ride, and Willy was there. He hadn't really wanted to leave me the entire time, and had sat there and waited for me. We called the team lead for a ride back to work, and then headed home after gathering up our stuff from there.

I didn't feel well that evening. Jimmy, the other co-worker noted from the heart monitor that my resting heart rate was 90. That is too high. That is me not doing anything to get into shape and drinking waaay too much caffein. This was a wake-up call. Not sure for what, but I'm drinking water this afternoon. I still don't feel up to even just a stroll on the treadmill at the hotel. I can tell my heart is still running around 90 bpm. I also know that when someone is having chest pains I won't just look at them with questioning eyes waiting for them to make a decision. That was the one thing I didn't want to do, be the one to decide. So, if someone looks hesitant at all about whether they should go to ER, I'll dump them into my truck and take them. The person in pain is not the one to be deciding if it's serious enough or not. That just adds to the stress.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Time is Draggin On

I'm STILL in Lansing. The fielding continued to go well, and I am basically finished with my part. However, it is Monday, and my flight home isn't till Friday. I could go home, probably, but there is little incentive, other than getting home. So, I'm sitting in a room on site, killing time. Up until this morning there were things I did need to do. Maybe I'll think of some more.

I ended up spending money yesterday. First I made a $70+ order to Thru-hiker.com for hammock and hammock sock-making parts. Lightweight bug netting, grossgrain ribbon, cord and cordlocks should hopefully be waiting at the post office when I get home. I paid up my subscription to a message board I frequent, and then went to the mall and spent another $70 on gee-gaws from an import store that is going out of business. Two dragon statues and a couple of (cheaply) framed prints I liked. Hey, Oddball, I almost got you a dragon statue, too, but didn't know which one you would like. Getting them home may be interesting...

There is a meet-up of most of the folks I'd really like to see going on in Damascus, VA today. Shiloh, Lost, Zak and a few others all converge there at The Only Wanderer's house. Yet another thing I could have attended if I wasn't up here... doing the responsible thing... I'm hoping to hear from Shiloh this afternoon, and Lost later on, maybe in a week when she gets home.

I'm designing and redesigning my hammock-to-be and hammock sock-to-be. Hope I keep the enthusiasm to actually cut them out and sew them next week when I get home.

Time to make my hourly tour through the message boards to see if anyone is saying anything interesting.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Still in Lansing

I have today off work. I'm doing laundry, and I slept in. That is two of the main goals of my day off. This fielding so far has been fairly easy. I'm ahead of the curve (which is why I was allowed to take today (Sunday) off when everyone else was teaching), and the unit here is really easy to work with. I'm waiting for something to blow up and the entire situation hop into the proverbial handbasket and head south.

Heard from Shiloh the past 2 nights as he zeroed in Erwin.

Hmmm, the electricity just went off in the hotel.... ah, it came back on. I'd best to check my laundry.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Off Again

I'm in my motel room, this time in Lansing, Michigan. Tomorrow we inventory equipment and set up my classroom, then it's teaching the class again. I wasn't excited about leaving home this time for some reason. At this point it is just a job. I do think that it is the job I said I wanted, with the travel. And I do enjoy the travel. Lansing wasn't on my list of must-see places, but oh well.

I had a bad headache all afternoon. It is finally gone. I am unpacked. Next to get my equipment in order. I looked in on the pool and 'spa', which is a hot tub. For the first time traveling for work, this one looks clean enough to get into. I did bring my swim suit. We'll see. My room is nice, full kitchen and such.

So, I can tell already I'll be more than ready to head home before the 3 weeks is up. Heck, I was ready to head back as soon as I was at the Lansing airport. For some reason, Lansing from the air just didn't trip my trigger. Guess I got spoiled by all the fantastic scenery around Santa Fe.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Progress

With the prospect of Nancye heading here tomorrow to borrow my hammock (since I'm going to be gone and not going to the hang-out like I had planned... sigh...), I am actually cleaning house. I had not started any of my projects this week after learning that I'm headed out again for work so soon. However, if I can get the house cleaned and get packed today, perhaps we can actually sew us some hammocks tomorrow when she is here. I have some ideas about how to do the bug net hammock sock, but no bug netting yet to make it with. However, if we can just get the hammocks sewn, that will be progress.

I have a name of a guy to contact to fix the driveway. It is getting impassable. My neighbors who live past me and also use the driveway are rutting it out by driving around the waterholes instead of just through them. This is making them even bigger. They aren't deep, and if they would just drive through them... sigh again... Actually, he has my name to contact me. It will be a month till he can work on the drive, according to the mutual friend who has recommended him. At any rate, I want to schedule it and start saving money for it.

Shiloh is in Hot Springs, NC this weekend. He's starting to talk about wanting to make miles on the trail and so isn't taking a zero. I don't want to make him feel like he needs to hurry. A week or two one way or the other when we are talking 5 months isn't going to make that much of a difference. I will take some days and meet him in Virginia when I get back, hopefully.

Back to housecleaning.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Feeling Guilty

I have meant to catch this journal up. Really. I did some cool hiking in Santa Fe. Went to Bandelier National Monument and saw some neat cliff dwellings, then went to Los Alamos and saw part of the Science Museum. Only part because it was almost closing time by then. Next day we went to Tent Rocks National Monument, which is about half-way between Albuquerque and Santa Fe. Really cool area, and we hiked for about 4 hours. Next day Mike and I went to the casino. We were walking out about $40 down each when I realized it was near a drawing time. We went back and waited for the drawing, and Mike won $100. I went back to the casino one night the next week, and ended up $90 overall.

Since I've been home, I haven't done much here. I did meet Shiloh in Gatlinburg last weekend. We had 3 days of really neat time together. I had hoped to go to Hot Springs and meet him there for the Hang-Out at the end of this month. On Tuesday I found out that I'm headed to Michigan for 3 weeks, leaving this Monday. Since then I've spent my time at work and at home getting things ready to head out again. This was my last time to easily spend time with Shiloh until he finishes his hike, probably in September or early October. There are some good reasons why this is not all bad. We both have agendas that we need to tend to between now and then. I just wish we could see each other again sooner. They say things just tend to work out on the trail, so I'm holding out that something unforeseen will happen (only good things!) and all will be well.

I'm hoping to get more into the habit of writing here. Life has sped up, so there is no reason I can't jot something down on a regular basis.