PCT Day 99
Friday July 21
Today I decided to get some chores done. Enough with the relaxation! I had some tasks to do that I’d been putting off for a while. Well, there was no excuse not to do them now.
I hadn’t washed my quilt yet this season and decided it was probably time to do so. My down quilt is my most expensive piece of gear and I had heard horror stories from other hikers about washings gone wrong, so I was a little hesitant at first. But I’d watched my friends successfully wash their bags and they all turned out fine.
Mass Hole and I walked to a nearby laundromat and availed ourselves of the front-loading washing machines. I found detergent specifically formulated for down at the Patagonia store and followed the instructions on the label. My quilt came out very sad and limp-looking with the down all stuck into big wet clumps. We put our bags in a big industrial-sized drier along with our camp shoes – the idea is that the shoes will bounce around and help the feathers regain their loft as they zing against the sleeping bags. Most people use tennis balls but we couldn’t find any and our shoes ended up working just fine. It took a LONG time though. We were stuck there for hours. But my quilt looked and smelled great when I was done.
I also decided to rinse off my tent and my backpack using the hose at the hostel. It was an interesting exercise to empty *everything* out of my pack and inventory all the contents. They dried quickly on the picnic tables in the sunshine.
Today is my third day on Prednisone and I was hoping to notice some improvements in my symptoms by now, but no such luck. I decided to go ahead and extend my stay at the hostel a few more days as I continued to monitor my progress. And, since I was going to be here for a while, I figured it was time to buy some groceries and start eating more cheaply. Dr Pain and I walked to the grocery store and bought ingredients for a giant summer salad. It was a nice feeling to make dinner in the hostel’s kitchen and eat at a dining room table on real dishes with real silverware.
The hostel was hopping tonight. It is a Friday and all the beds are full with hikers and other travelers. Hikers sat out front on picnic tables drinking beer and swapping stories with each other. More hikers that I’d previously met came into town including Dos Tacos, Drum Solo, and Tortilla Bill. I sat outside with them for a while but went to bed by 10:30 pm.
Sleep proved somewhat elusive, however, even though I felt tired. I think the Prednisone is messing with my system a little and making it harder for me to sleep.