Saturday, December 10, 2016

Screw This

It had been a long and mostly sleepless night.  If the normal pre-trip issues weren’t enough to interfere with sleep, I laid there listening to the return of the wind.  I was up and dressed at 5:45.  I walked back down to the lake.  The wind was 25 and gusting higher with drizzle and heavy mist and fog.  Everything was soaked.  The wind chill was terrible.  Even with three layers and my new fleece jacket, the cold cut right through me like I was standing there in nothing but a t-shirt.  The water, the sky, the view down the lake for the short distance I could see, the asphalt parking lot, and my mood were all colored the same slate gray.  Any trip can find one weather-bound for a day or two, maybe even three, but it is disgustingly disheartening for that to be day 1, 2, and 3 of the trip with an unchanging five-day forecast, especially if that means just sitting in a motel burning money.  I stood there looking at my prospects as I got colder and wetter.  Finally, having gotten wet enough and cold enough, I sadly said, “Screw this!”  I turned and walked back to the motel where Jean and Laura were still asleep, and went back to bed.

Laura had to get back to work the next day.  Even if I left the motel and just paddled out to the first campsite, if I got sick, relief would then be 750 miles away.  The only plausible solution seemed to be giving the weather a week or so to straighten out, and hit it again.  Also, our wedding anniversary was a matter of days away, so the break would avoid my being away then. It just made sense to throw in the towel for a few days.  After breakfast and a little walkabout in town, we headed back south.  We got back to Carlisle at 5p.m.  We had added 750 miles to the odometer, were exhausted, and had nothing to show for the effort.  We threw in a couple quick microwave dinners, and put the cap on the day and the trip by collapsing into bed.

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