"At Least it's Not Snowing"
Started off the day early in Calgary, on the road by 6:15. It was cold and overcast, and even at that hour it took us over an hour to get out of the city with traffic. It seemed to take forever to get to Strathmore, just 50 short kilometers away. J's knee was bugging her, and over lunch V convinced J to get it checked out at the local hospital. By this point it had started to rain (as per usual) and we got a little chilled en route. The hospital turned out to be very efficient, and J had x-rays, spoke to the doctor, and received a prescription for anti-inflammatories within an hour and a half. An inflamed IT band was the culprit of the pain, and we're both relieved that there's nothing structurally wrong. Meanwhile, V sat with the bikes in the entryway to the ER and had a great time chatting with people. It was like being in a James Herriot novel, but with short stories about people instead of pets: a man who'd been to the Arctic, a woman who was expecting her first baby, and so on. We left the hospital around 2:30 and by the time we filled the prescription and bought supplies it was almost 4pm - late in the day to continue on, but we did anyway. It was raining harder - an icy, biting, stinging, frigid, bone-chilling rain. Even with all of our layers we were cold, and the relentless wind just kept driving it into our faces. In these conditions it's hard to think about anything except how cold it is, and how much farther the campsite is, and how we're possibly going to get warm when we get there. You can imagine how grateful and relieved we were when around the 90 km mark a truck pulled over and the driver, Jared, asked us if we'd like a ride. A week ago, this would've felt like a cop-out. Now, we realize that accepting help along the way is necessary to keep our sanity intact. Not only did Jared drive us directly to our destination campsite in Brooks, but he left us with a DELICIOUS snack of baklava (Thank You Jared for everything!!!). We pitched our tent, cooked some KD, dried out some gear in the bathroom and are heading to bed around 10pm. This day feels like at least three days in one! Warm, dry feet can never be overrated.