This is where things went a little south for me..After my final leg of the race, we had some time to kill until the finish. My stomach was not doing so well and I thought, Well I must be really hungry or something.. We went to Village Inn, where we waited and waited so by the time we got served I was gobbling down OJ and wolfing the pancakes I ordered, thinking OK I just need to get some calories in.. Wrong! Then not only did my stomach feel yucky, now I had all this food sitting in it. Not a good sign..At the finish line I tried my best to find a coke or anything fizzy. The only thing they really had was beer, I don't drink so didn't go there. I did find some weird drink at the Expo that worked for awhile and I just thought it would go away with enough water and time..I did feel myself getting a little grumpier as the day wore on. We went to the Hot Springs which may not have been the best thing for possible dehydration but it kept my mind off my stomach issues that seemed to be somewhat abated by now. And it was fun!!
If you have a queasy stomach do not read on.. We got back in the van..Off we went to head to Breckenridge for a night in a nice condo with real beds where we could relax, eat and just hang out after all our hard earned work. Margaret was driving, and all of a sudden I got that feeling.. which felt vaguely familiar from my drinking days..Oh shit! I think I am going to puke! I think I said..You really know who your friends are when they immediately hand you a plastic bag and ask Do you want me to pull over? I think I said no thinking I will just have a little regurg and be done with it. But noooooo....I had to have the projectile kind that went all over me, the car, my bag, shoes and probably some people, I don't know. OK, time to pull over...WTF??? I felt so embarrassed, tired to clean up as best I could, my friends trying to help but were as tired and helpless as I felt, I am sure. I got up in front and we stopped at the nearest gas station where Jane scored me some coke and Gator Ade (you can tell she has kids-nonplussed by the whole thing). Mark reassured me I probably was going to be OK (that really helped in my foggy state). I took my pulse-no rapid pulse. The thing that worried me was I could not remember for the life of me how we had gotten on the mountain. Where we started, how we got there, little details like that. That scared me. I am thinking high altitude, exhaustion, dehydration, all of it.. being the hypochondriac I am-I immediately envisioned myself in the hospital in Breckenridge, which was in the boondocks to me. So I made the executive decision to call my daughter to come pick me up from Denver..They told me later I was near one of the most highly ranked hospitals in the country in Vail...whatever..I wanted to get out of the mountains..like now..
My friends, bless all of them. They treated it like it was no big deal, did not say Oh my God she puked and it smells so bad in here-get her outta here!! Thank you!! They took care of me until Becca and Dan showed up a couple of hours later. I got back to mile high Denver, sucked down a whole bunch of Gatorade and proceeded to sleep 12 hours straight..Funny how things look different in the morning! I remembered everything by the next morning so probably little brain damage resulted..
I have been hiking in some pretty high mountains before, have seen altitude issues, dehydration, but never had first hand experience. I think I saved my friend from having to calm me down all night because my mind is a dangerous thing when it comes to illness..I felt really sad to miss that last night...but there is always next year..
Afterthoughts: We learned alot about each other in our little van and on the whole trip. Lots of profound thoughts shared Everyone is responsible for their own happiness and Life in dynamic..things like that. Things that in those circumstances seemed so funny and absurd at the time that only crazy people in a van couped up for 24 hours could appreciate.. We learned I am not such a great navigator when I am tired. Tim is a great driver in the snow. And Damon, the other driver was the best navigator gadget person I have ever met. Mark likes triple peanut butter sandwiches. Jane can sleep anywhere. Margaret loves running uphill, in the snow. On and on I could go.. I loved the whole thing (except the puking part). The weather made it interesting and challenging. Since we faced it as a team, it felt so doable and less frightening..
It took me back to when I was on the swim team as a kid and the team depended on each other to do well. Team racing is the best. I felt camaraderie this weekend like no other feeling..
Sign me up..I am ready for next year!