Holy Toledo

No pictures today. Last report I was having a near death experience in Youngstown. Today I’ve been doing much better. I guess We’ve made it to the Plains. The hills parted and about an hour out of Toledo, cornstalks appeared in large fields.

Arriving in Holy Toledo we got our second oil change of the trip. Then we did the laundry. Tofu is especially talented at folding. Now we’re at our motel, where the internet is not working. So this probably won’t get published tonight. I could go searching for access, but I think my priority needs to be lying down on the bed.

After doing the laundry and lugging all Tofu’s paraphernalia into the motel, I’ve developed some pain in my back. I’m returning to the kidney stone theory of life. Last night I was in so much pain (7 out of 10) that I couldn’t determine the source. It was a flu-like situation.

It’s been more than 15 years since my last round of kidney stones I will never forget the first round. It took place in the late 80’s. I was at my office at church. All the sudden I felt like the flu had gotten me. Shortly I began to experience waves of nauseating pain. I called Lynnie and told her I was coming home with the flu. At home, I sat in a recliner and Lynnie was so concerned, she called the doctor and an appointment was made for later in the day. A few minutes later, I got up and started to head for the car. I said to Lynnie “Take me to the emergency room now!” I was leaning on our car feeling faint (10 out of 10). She gets in the driver’s seat and we start down the street. Lynnie says, “What if they want to do surgery? You always say you wouldn’t let anyone in Grant’s Pass operate on you.” I say “Rose, I’m dying here. Let them do whatever they want.” When we got to the Emergency room, they took my blood pressure. I remember the top number was 212. The nurse said, “you must be in quite a bit of pain.” Eventually there was an x-Ray. Sure enough there were stones. They gave me some drugs and a strainer and sent me home. “Catch them if you can.” The drugs were great. Within 24 hours I passed the stones and managed to catch them. They were tested and found to be ordinary stones. Drink more water, and avoid dairy products (yeah, like that’s going to happen). What I did do was quit the Atkin’s diet I was on (remember, no carbs, lots of bacon).

The second round happened early in the 21st century. I had gone to a board meeting at Yakama Christian mission, when the pain struck. I excused myself and headed to the bathroom, when I discovered blood in my urine. So I called Lynnie and told her ” I’m coming home, would you call the urologist for me?” Lynnie wanted me to go to the hospital in Yakima, but I insisted if the pain was too great I would get help. When I arrived in Corvallis, I went directly to the doctor. The same drill as before, except then the dietary recommendations were dropped. And the doc said to me that some people are just talented at growing stones. So recently, I’ve wondered whether or not I was cured of kidney stones. Today, I’m thinking it’s time for some stones.

This afternoon I have had some pain coming on… fairly mild. It is located in the kidney stone zone. Yesterday, I didn’t get on the pain until It was hard to tell where it originated. I’m currently thinking McDonald’s is not to blame. So I’m taking IBU and drinking lots of water. As I type these words I have 2 pain on the 10 point scale. It was rising, but after drugs and reclining I am doing okay.

I don’t think I’m going to even try to publish tonight, as I don’t want anyone to be overly concerned.

Since I wrote those words Tofu and I have journeyed through Ann Arbor, Lansing, Grande Rapids and Benton Harbor, Michigan. These are worst roads I have been on since the Yukon; similar to riding a bucking bronco at a high rate of speed. The part of Michigan I drove through is mostly flat. It was rainy; by the time I was halfway through, my back pain was coming on strong. The Benton Harbor Motel was a disappointment. The WiFi didn’t work, the tv didn’t work, the bed didn’t work. When I got off the road, my back improved dramatically, until it was time to sleep. It was a night of constantly changing my position, so I could sort of sleep for an hour or two.

Then I got confused about the time. So I finally gave up sleeping at 6am. Little did I know that it was really 4am. It was black as night as we flew down the highway, toward Chicago riding the biking bronco. Yes painful. An hour later Tofu And I went for a walk. Pain dropped to a 2 or 3; we got back in the car for another hour, rinse and repeat. As we were going through Chicago in the dark with a million cars, and the radio told me we had crossed a time zone, and it was another hour earlier. The sun never rose. The clouds were heavy, the temperature sat at 34 degrees.

I started thinking I’ve lost my traveling enthusiasm. I’m more interested in getting home than continuing, to explore the countryside. Lynnie and I made several forays on the ground to Chicago and St Louis. I’ve been here before. So Tofu and I drove all the way to Des Moines. Now I’ll publish this blog from this very nice motel 6 and bring you up to date with a few photos. Love.

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