Warning, this is a long post!
West Cornwall Rd (836 feet) mile 1486.1 to Falls Village Water St. (560 feet) mile 1495.3 for a 9.2 mile day.
The day it all fell apart. If you don’t want to know the gory, personal details, and sometime descriptive details, of the accounts of this day, you may not want to read on. I don’t think there will be many pictures, just a mind dump of what I can remember from this day and how I ended up in the Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington, Massachusetts!
⬆️ this picture I took on the hike today because it reminded me of coming through North Carolina in the spring when the fresh green leaves were just making themselves known to the backpackers making their way to Maine.
After that picture I had my second hurry into the woods to dig a hole to start the journey of what would be known as Campylobacter and the diarrhea that it brought with it!
Suzanna dropped me off today and for the first time since I started this journey 121 days ago, she cried! I asked her why and at the time she said she wasn’t sure why she was crying. August 4, I asked her again why she cried that day and she said something just wasn’t right leaving me that day, now we know why.
You see, about 10 minutes after she left I had the first case of diarrhea that would start days of such. We started up Rogers Ramp, a fairly steep climb up a rocky section of the trail just off the highway. I looked in front of me and say a double blaze with the top blaze being to the left which meant we would be turning left. I turned to my left and saw nothing but a jumble of rocks and really no easy was to go over them, but, there was another double blaze with the top blaze to the right and I was hoping that would lead somewhere over the rocks in a somewhat easy fashion. But it didn’t, it actually led us into a tiny rock split that we were able to walk through,
which was a good thing since that morning I filled my Ursack food bag with 5 days of food, this meant I was at a full pack weight of 27 pounds. Thankfully, with every resupply was about 12 wipes which, on a normal week, would last me five days until the next resupply, but by now I had already used four! We continued on and passed a campsite, unfortunately at the time everything was fine, but, not long after that another episode hit and I had to walk off trail to take some time.
Carrying on from there we climb up some more and got to a view called Hang Glider View where we were able to look down on Lime Rock Speedway.
Continuing on from this beautiful view we went back up and then back down and on the way down my body started telling me there was something wrong. From my waste down I started aching really bad and then my legs started to get really weak. We finally made it down to Connecticut highway 7 and I had to stop and take my pack off for a while. Finally realizing I was going to have to walk three more miles to get into a town I put my pack back on and started a short road walk. We then went back into the woods and hiked up and down some more over some really short step ups and downs which then lead us to Water Street in Falls Village, Conn.
Making my way into Falls Village and into a cafe things just weren’t right. By the time I ordered and sat down to wait on my food my body started to ache all over and chills started. At this point I knew I needed to go sleep this thing off. Birdie and I called a hotel and got us a room that we could stay in with an urgent care not far away and a hospital if need be. Honestly, at the time, I thought a hospital was not going to be needed, I would just sleep this off and then get back on trail the next day.
We checked in and got to the room where I immediately used the bathroom and then laid down while Birdie went out and got us some dinner… soup for me! That did not go well! I fell asleep and would then wake up and try to eat which then lead almost immediately to more bathroom time. I laid back down and was awakened by Birdie around 9:15. She had been talking through all of this, a play by play of sorts, with Suzanna and Ramona, my stepmom. They had determined it would be best if I went to the emergency room because it was not looking good.
We arrived at the hospital and when they checked me in I had a fever of 104.5º. I got into a room and the tests started immediately and did not end until around 3:00 am Tuesday morning. I continued to be monitored by the doctors and nurses and finally on Thursday morning, after taking a sample on Wednesday morning, they determined that I had Campylobacter. Campylobacter is an infection caused by eating raw or undercooked poultry or eating something that touched it or it could also come from unfiltered water. Well, I filter all of my water, but, you know, things like that could always fell. I had also eaten out five times while around Kent, Connecticut that weekend and a few possibly shady places along the trail before arriving in Kent, so we will never know where I actually caught this from. Thursday morning I was given an antibiotic specifically for the infection and within 24 hours Suzanna and I were on our way to North Adams, Mass to wait for Birdie to get near there and then I would get back on trail with her. I am so thankful that Suzanna was willing, and able, to get back on a plane Tuesday morning and come back to stay with me in the hospital.
Puppy Love, out!