Day 57 — Sunday, May 11 (Mother’s Day)
We both slept in at our “cowboy campsite” so that I could catch up on rest. I heard a hiker on the trail nearby going southbound, which isn’t unusual for a Sunday. Before her phone died last night, Tandem had arranged for Christopher to pick us up on VA 621, Craig Creek Road, at noon today.
We got up and packed around 9:30. I ate an apple and a honey bun and drank some Gatorade. We got back on the trail at 10:00 and headed down to the Niday shelter. We found a thru hiker drying his belongings and waiting for his group to catch up with him. One of his hiking buddies had suffered a fall and had gone to the hospital in Blacksburg for four stitches.
We snacked and chatted until 11:30. A sign on the shelter said there was going to be a big cookout for hikers just down the hill at Craig Creek Road, starting at 14:00. We said our goodbyes and started the 1.3 miles down (and up) to VA 621. Tandem was going her speed down the hill. On the uphill, I vomited again.
I arrived at the parking area at 12:15 to find Tandem, Wet Dog, and a few women with tables and coolers set up while they prepped Dutch ovens with various delicious recipes for the hikers. I dropped my pack near Tandem’s and settled into a folding chair in the shade. The trail angels had been informed of my illness and were very caring. I had a ginger ale and naked hotdog.
I sat and talked with the trail angels while Tandem and Wet Dog helped set up. People continued to arrive until there were eight trail angels and a dozen hikers. Christopher showed up at 13:00 in my Trailblazer, still loaded with the stuff from his dorm. He took a seat, and we discussed our options, but until we could get a cell signal, we really didn’t have a clue.
We loaded our packs back in the vehicle, said our trail angel thanks and hiker goodbyes, and headed south down the very long Craig Creek Road to VA 460. We went into Blacksburg and stopped at a gas station for a break and to do cellphone research. Being Sunday, there wasn’t much open, so we headed to the Montgomery Regional Hospital in Blacksburg.
I was checked in and gave samples, which showed signs that I had a virus, so I was given a couple of liters of fluids and anti-nausea meds intravenously. Tandem came in to visit while the fluids were given and we watched TV while Christopher did uMentioned business via Skype in the lobby.
I was checked out at 17:00 with prescriptions for antibiotics and anti-nausea meds. We went to find the kids dinner, which for me was a Starbucks grande strawberries and cream frap with whip.
Because our plan is to attend Trail Days in Damascus at the end of the week, our options were to stay in a hotel for four nights or to drive home to Atlanta. We decided to drive home, with an overnight stay tonight at my in-laws. Christopher drove, and I went to bed immediately upon arrival.