People here have been so nice to me. I’ve always heard that ‘Northerners’ are stand-offish, but that has not been my experience at all!
The first night here, I stayed with Vanessa, because I knew I would get in later in the day. I knew Vanessa did laundry at her house. I had a very nice stay at her place!
In 2016, I had stayed with Maria McCabe, but Maria shuttles to the laundromat. Maria will be 90 years old in a week. I didn’t want to trouble her to take me to the laundromat late (and I was terribly stinky) so I stayed with Vanessa the first night and then moved over to Maria’s the next.
What a jewel Maria is! I just love her. She is from Germany and married an American serviceman, and then came to live in America. She is a strong woman and tells it like it is, but she has a heart of gold. She has had some health problems in the two years since I’ve seen her. She has sciatica and has a lot of pain and trouble walking because of it, but she is sharp and quick-witted. She confided that if she has to stop taking in hikers, she won’t want to live. She says she loves hikers and loves helping people. She still drives to help and visit friends and neighbors in need.
She drove to the farmers market and got some ears of corn and shared it with me. I helped her shuck it. That is corn in her hand-her choice of a pose! 😂 She is a character!
Maria took me to the ER of the hospital today. She wouldn’t accept any money for shuttling me. I felt guilty….but she told me not to argue with her because it gave her a headache and made her sciatica act up and hurt. She was appalled and said she wouldn’t take money for taking a sick person to the hospital. She won’t take my money. May God bless her for her kindness. She said they call her a Trail Angel, and if she took my money it would ruin her status. Will you say a prayer for Maria? My heart hurts for her.
The people at the hospital were awesome! I don’t like going to the doctor. I avoid them like the plague! Everyone, from the lady working the desk, to the nurses, those who drew blood, and the Nurse Practitioner who saw me were nice, patient, attentive, and they really listened. They apologized for the long wait. I apologized for having to come to the ER for something that was not an emergency. The Nurse Practitioner looked me straight in the eye and said, “This is serious! I’m glad you came in! You did the right thing.” They take Lyme Disease seriously up here, because it’s a real problem here. I’ve talked to a lot of locals who have told me they had it!
The guy who came to draw blood had a terrible time getting a vein. It’s not his fault. They always tell me I have tiny veins and have trouble finding one. After sticking me three different places without striking gold, the guy gave up. A lady came in and said, “Word on the street is that you are a ‘bad stick’.” 😂 She looked, and tapped my veins, and it didn’t take too many times to finally find a vein. Unfortunately, a third woman came and said they needed more blood, so they had to go through the process again.
The Nurse Practitioner said that results of the test take 3-5 days to come back. She said with my symptoms, having hiked through prime Lyme territory, and having had a tick bite (I did pull one off of my leg with the tweezers, but no bullseye rash) that she felt I should start the antibiotics, and call them in 5 days for test results. If caught early, it can be cured. If not, it becomes chronic, and hard to cure. There is a hiker here named Mountain Dew, who said she knew a hiker who got antibiotics from a Doctor but didn’t want to take them, and he got so bad he had to leave the trail. So I’m going to take my antibiotics.
When I was getting my prescription filled, I was having a bank card issue and was asking questions about banks in town. A lady I didn’t even know offered to drive me down the road to try an ATM there. She not only drove me there, but took me all the way back to Maria’s, rather than dropping me off at the Pharmacy. I asked a store manager of the grocery store here a question, and he went out of his way to find out the answer, including texting their ‘IT’ guy. Everyone has been so nice!
There is a ‘Little Free Library’ outside of the grocery store (which has a deli) and there are tables and chairs for people to hang out and eat or read. I’ve been intrigued with these ‘Little Free Libraries’ for a while. It’s just a place to leave a book or take a book.
I was running a low grade fever at the hospital. I still feel like I have it. They were also concerned because my blood pressure was high. The Nurse told me I had the heart rate of an athlete! (I popped a few buttons off my shirt bursting with pride. I’ve never been an athletic person, but boy have I earned that badge these past 4 1/2 months!)
They said it could take up to 5 days before I would start feeling better if this is Lyme Disease. I’m not sure whether to stay another day, or if I should leave tomorrow and just do low mileage.
So there you have it! That’s all of the news from Lake Wononskopomuc! No joke! Maria drove me to the Lake, pointed to the sign, looked at me straight-faced and said in her thick German accent, “What is the name of that lake?” When I tried to pronounce it, she laughed at me, knowing there was no way I could pronounce it! She is a character!