The hike back took a little less time and initially I had a really good pace but after a while the climb back up out of the Harris Wash and up from the canyon floor took it's toll. I worked hard not to gripe even as my left calf started to howl at the strain. Finally we made it back to the cars and I don't know that I've been happier to be in front of a car.
We settled back at camp where I orchestrated a great dinner of brown rice, canned corn with chipolte, canned salmon with wilted spinach and a squeeze of orange juice. Thanks to Meredith we had delicious wine - Menage a Trois from Folis a Deux (a place I visited when
I lived in California); it was a very indulgent night; a very jovial dinner with all six of us recounting the day, telling other stories, and generally
The evening air was warmer than it had been, which was nice for my sore muscles and joints. In the lower campground the sound of the stream
was a beautiful accompaniment to the sounds of our laughter while a three quarter moon rose over the cliffs behind the raised campsite where Meredith and I had our tents.
Earlier Greg and I had been talking about how I was doing; I was trying to use words that were not too demoralizing in my self-assessment (being fat, out of shape, last in line, low lung capacity when he said "inexperienced". My response was that was a much kinder frame than I had for myself.
As every night I am amazed I do not simply crahs as soon as my head hits the floor. At 10:45pm I woke needing pee out in the cold. Crawling out of my bag I found a suitable spot mere feet away, promptly returning to my cocoon. For some reason I resisted the notion I was cold and foolishly did not add a layer until much later. Throughout the night my left knee woke me with a great deal of pain, to the point of my whimpering pathetically in my tent.
Weird pregnancy dream: Dorm/Doctor resident setting. Not sure who I was but there was a woman who was pregnant, but hiding it. She birthed a baby boy and asked me to hold/hide it. Somehow the baby pushed himself back up into my uterus and then I searched for a place to rebirth it, away from our colleagues.
On an odd block, vaguely desolate, ghetto like, I found a medical storefront of some murky nature. Entering a stall I pushed the baby out along with other matters which I initially thought was the uterus lining like from a menstrual cycle but when i touched it, or flipped it, it more resembled an early fetus that had stopped growing inside me, slightly deformed, as if it were further along than the size indicated, very red. Not sure but I think it registered as male to me. Suddenly someone was there and suggested I nurse the baby I had rebirthed. I had some kind of pump attached to my breast with a tube that could go to the baby's mouth. I was stunned to see milk but realized if i had also been pregnant than of course I could produce milk. (I suspect the tube/pump/breast is in part because of using the camel packs for water.)
I dumped the excess blood in a medical waste container at this place and made my way back to the dorm. I ran into two women, doctors, who asked if it was my baby and I said, "No, it was ____". Later I saw the mother hidden away in her room nursing the baby and wondered what was going on. Then we were having a meeting and she announced how she had lost that weight they were bugging her about and showed off her new svelte figure. I found the two doctors and said she clearly wanted the baby a secret and to forget what I had told them. They were amenable to this.
I am very confused at the meaning of the dream. Pregnancy and birth are often about creativity and growth. Does the dead fetus represent something I lost or let go of that I don't remember, that I didn't fully release? Why are all the babies male in my dreams? Rebirthing someone else's baby, after being given the baby? I don't think I have my own innate talent? Or am I both women and I am showing myself the way - the old me has moved on?
As I write today I am sitting along the Escalente River, on a trail beside beautiful rock face, hearing the river rush by, the sun is out. Greg is near me painting, the scent of turpentine perfuming the air. My body is greatful for the day off from hiking. I cannot wait to get to Boulder Mountain Lodge to take a shower, wash my clothes and sleep in a bed where it's warm.
(This photo is of Janet surrounded by trees near the river.)
(The photo below is from the drive to our next stop.)