Slept right through my alarm and still clutching my prayer cross. I was stunned to see nothing but clear blue sky. Either the winds changed the direction of the smoke or...well...honestly I didn't care for an explanation of it. I just wanted to be safe and for the first time in more than 24hrs it seemed likely. Heading back south and west, continuing the plan that started from fear. To say this day started as a miracle would be a gross understatement.
My body had some issues but not many ill effects as I thought would be the case. I was not refreshed. Is any one after 14nights backpacking? Still, I could walk, there was water and I kept to my task. Following that canyon the main trail started to reappear. As it climbed slowly above the canyon I decided this had to be the way. South and west, it became the mantra of the morning; just has it was the entire day before.
Some people say I have a very annoying "smugness" about me. Today as I came across a trail head sign lets just say I was humble, contrite and believed in luck for maybe the first time in my life. I wanted adventure, in the worst way and that is what I obtained; far more than I wanted. At that moment no one, including myself, would have ever recognized me. At least by talking to me or judging my demeanor.
On that long road headed to the Town of Gila three hunters gave me a lift to Silver City. Plenty of beer was offered and accepted. Their generosity allowed me to have a piece of mind for the night. The trip may have ceased but the process of what happened was just beginning. That being said convalescing in SC for the next 4 days seemed like the right thing to do.
I'd lost over 12lbs on this trip, felt excruciating pain that still exists, serving me reminders time to time. My first words uttered on the phone with someone who asked how my trip went were... "Remind me never to do this again." She exclaimed "Why bother? ...I know you will any how." Perhaps she's right :-)
Till the next entry... Bangarang