I felt like I was leaving the plains. Wetter, surely, there were more trees, and even raccoons running about on the shore. I must be entering the midwest, or whatever its Canadian equivalent is. Even the air felt more humid, more like back in -
-- ACHOO --
- Missouri. I guess there is some ragweed about, and that's something to sneeze at.
Now this is going to be a sticky post.
I have always run in the fall; I mean, runny nose, runny eyes. It isn't the nice thick snot of a good head cold, but the continual running of a sticky faucet. My wastebasket and its environment would fill up with tissues, which had to be purchased in those economy packs of twelve or twenty-four boxes.
It became nearly impossible to sleep on my side because the mucous would accumulate in my nose so I couldn't breathe. Sleeping facedown just made my pillow wet and disgusting. If I slept on my back, the stuff fell back into my lungs, keeping my nose clear, but I would develop a hacking cough that lasted through the rest of the year, until the allergens returned and my nose started up again.
It's probably these allergies that made me fairly uninterested in athletics and physical activity when I was young. It wasn't until I was 22 that I discovered Claritin (Loratadine) helped considerably. The next spring I moved to an apartment on a statelong bike trail, and was soon doing century rides.
I quickly noticed that I had no significant allergies in Calgary. The dry, cooler climes were like heaven to my nose. But working east I finally found them again, and here in Canada they come a month early. I had hoped to chase summer down south on the Mississippi, but now I'm worried I'm going to be chasing allergy season, instead.
Now with my eyes blinded by run and sun, any plant with leaves looks like the despised ragweed, and some of the fences too. I didn't see the nasty fence in time to slow down. The post unexpectedly swung up when I hit the lower strands which cut up my left elbow enough to bleed.
I was a complete wreck by the time I stopped that evening. I knew I had brought some Loratadine with me, because at the beginning of the trip the bottle had spilled little tablets all over the place. That wasn't encouraging, though. Did I still have the bottle, and was there still anything left? I searched all through my first aid bag, my backpack where I had seen it last, before finally finding it with my personal hygiene supplies.
There were plenty of pills. Since I hadn't needed any in Calgary they were two years expired, but what could I do? It took effect surprisingly rapidly so I was able to sleep that night.
Day 51 ended: 50*35.319N, 103*00.361W