On our hike last week, we returned to Lacamas Park to attempt to hike the part of the park that we didn’t get to before. We were only partially successful in this. We set off in the opposite direction from before, but we ended up doing a loop in the part of the park that I didn’t really want to repeat, it being the wildest, and still missed some of the same part of the loop as we did before. My sister, Sue, went with me and Maja, one of my hiking friends, and it’s a good thing she did, too, because she is a nurse.
Just as we started into the area that I didn’t want to repeat, accidentally through not understanding the maps we saw (it’s annoying to us that so many parks leave out the You Are Here marker on most of the posted maps), Maja had some sort of attack. She became very dizzy and said her neck was hurting her. We stopped and tried to get her to sit, but she wouldn’t sit. At another point, Sue urged her to lie down in a meadow so she could put her feet up, but she refused. We had to continue on very slowly, with frequent stops, and unfortunately we were in the most remote part of the park, so it took us about an hour to get out to the car. All the time, my sister and I said later, both of us were worried that Maja was going to pass out.
Once we got to the car, there was a debate of what to do next. I thought we should go to the nearest urgent care, whereas Maja wanted to go to the urgent care in Battle Ground (40 minutes away), which she knew was in her insurance network. I think it’s ridiculous that during an emergency we have to worry about this stuff. Sue started to take her to a hospital that was in her network, but I pointed out that most insurance companies want you to go to urgent care first. We ended up going where Maja wanted. Then the urgent care wanted to send her to the hospital (the one we passed on the way there, that Sue wanted to take her to) by ambulance, and she didn’t want to take the ambulance. I wasn’t driving, and Sue had run out to get us something to eat, since we assumed that we would be there a long time. I told Maja that if the nurse thought she should take an ambulance, she should take one. So, she did, and we were away from there in a surprisingly short time. It turned out that she had stopped taking her blood pressure medicine over a year ago without telling her doctor because she didn’t like the side effects. Also, she had already been diagnosed with some sort of blockage (I didn’t really understand what they were talking about), and her blood pressure was really low. (Her top number was 85!)
By the way, the urgent care folks said we should have gone to the hospital, and when she explained about the insurance people wanting you to go to urgent care first, the guy said, “I don’t know about insurance.” Well, that’s the problem, isn’t it? The health care people need to know about insurance. I noticed a ridiculous notice at that urgent care telling people to check their bills for out-of-network service and to tell them if anything is out of network. Well, what good will that do you? If it’s on your bill, you’ve already been served by out-of-network people. I think that urgent care and hospitals should have to assure that all the people on an emergency case or procedure are in the patient’s network, because how can the patient do that when they are in the middle of the procedure or emergency? Oh well, enough about our ridiculous health care system.
In any case, Sue said she probably got treated faster the way we did it, because if we’d gone to Emergency, we probably would have waited an hour before anyone looked at Maja. She said that since she arrived in an ambulance from urgent care, they would look at her right away. Since Sue works in a hospital, I’m guessing she knows what she’s talking about.
So, that was scary, but Maja is home now after being hospitalized for two nights. She said her arteries are in fine shape and she just needs to take it easier on the exercise. She is also on a different blood pressure med.
What else has happened this week? Well, it’s getting a lot springier up here. The valley has been looking beautiful for some weeks, but my cherry trees just started blooming and my apple trees are just beginning to open their buds. I took a picture, but it wasn’t very dramatic, so I decided not to post it. In my landscaped slope in front of the house, there are beautiful blue flowers popping up all over. Plus, I planted a few snowdrops in the middle of the orchard, but now I see a bunch more coming up in a wooded area next to the orchard. Likewise, there are lots of wildflowers coming up in the wooded area next to our pond.
Speaking of the pond, I’ve spotted the ducks several times, and the other day I was up in the orchard when I saw a lot of commotion in the water. I was able to see the heads of three or four beavers! I told Wayne that I guessed Mr. Beaver got married and had children, and he said he didn’t think marriage had anything to do with it. Last year, I only ever saw one beaver at a time, so I figured there was only one.
I haven’t seen any deer since Lukey and I spotted one at the neighbor’s house when he was a small puppy, so that would have been back in August or September. But when I was on my way to Luke’s class Monday night, I saw one go across the road. It’s nice to see them, since there has been so much logging around here that we see fewer and fewer deer each year. It’s been a couple of years since we saw them on our property, although they were eating things in my garden at some time last year, because I saw the nibbles. We got it partially fenced in, so they stopped going in.
Most of the days this week were dreary, but it was really nice and warm on Sunday. We did some outside work. I didn’t need to weed my garden last year at all, hardly, but this year, I have lots of things coming up in it. Since the weeds all look like the same kind of grass, I presume it has something to do with the alpaca poop I mixed into the soil this fall. I’m guessing it’s whatever they eat.
Sunday was so nice that for the first time in a while we sat out by the pond, and earlier in the week, we had lunch on the deck. So, on Monday I put on a lighter top shirt over the bottom shirt I wear all winter (not the same one, of course), but that was a mistake. Monday was cold! I ended up changing back. So, it’s not warm spring yet, or at least not consistently.
Luke is doing okay at Relationship Class; at least, he hasn’t been kicked out yet. Some of the other dogs are having a bit of trouble behaving as well; in fact, he did better than several of them during Monday night’s class. And just in case anyone is wondering what Luke looks like now, I took a picture of him. He is almost 11 months old now, and I think he is full grown. At least, he is about the same size as the adult Keeshond we used to have, knee high but stocky, so that he seems bigger.