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2012/02/14

Alaska, the trip home.

We had a long trip back to the lodge and we ate a pack lunch they had for us on the bus.  I went straight to bed and woke early to the sound of someone rocking  the chair on the porch.  I looked out the window to see a bear playing with the rocking chair.  I would have love to sit and just watch him but with my proper bear training I knew this was not a good idea and just  lay back and listen to him as he walked along the front porch smacking chairs.  I slept in and almost missed breakfast.  I never new missing a meal would cause me such anxiety.  I spent the day wandering along the lake front collecting lava rocks that floated everywhere.  At one point I was crossing the river on the floating bridge and saw a bear sitting up to his neck in the lake just sitter there.  I watch for a long time when I saw a plane on approach  headed straight for the bear.  Again I felt the dread of seeing something bad happen.  But at the last moment the plane veered off as he must have seen his head sticking out of the water.  I found that these big bears have such human like actions they are very interesting to just sit  and watch they can be humorous as well as frightening.         
My last days at Brooks were the most relaxing time, I felt more comfortable with the bears and to just watch the wild life itself, loose and doing what it does without human confines’ was so rewarding .  I boarded my sea plane the next morning for a short hop to a remote air strip on the other side of the lake where I took a small bush plane back to Anchorage
When we landed at the small air strip the plane taxied up to shore  I again prepare to  get wet getting to shore.  One of the people there came out in waders to help us off the plane this time I got out behind the wing and had to walk forward to get off the pontoon. I ducked  to go under the wing brace and with my hat on did not know I was not clear when I raised my head right into the brace. Well I got more than my feet wet this time I fell in.  Even the cold water did not make the stars go away but it may have kept me from passing out.  It seemed like I was in slow motion as my head hit and I fell, I really thought I knocked  my lights out when the cold water shocked me back to reality.  Now the embarrassment of hitting my head and falling in the lake made me keep telling everyone I was OK.  I got my gear and grabbed some dry cloths and headed for the bathroom to change.  I took one look in the mirror and almost fainted again as the blood was running down the side of my head and neck.  A little blood on the head and face looks like gallons.  I cleaned up and stuffed my hat with tissue so it would soak up the blood.  I did not want anyone to know I was really hurt.  There were only few folks there so avoiding people was really easy.  What the hell could I have been thinking.  I got on the bush plane and sat with my wound to the window so the others would not notice it.  My head felt like I was hit with a hammer and the tissue was now blood soaked and it was starting to drip When we arrived in Anchorage.  My flight back to the lower 48 was four hours away so I rented a car and drove around till the blood just took over.  I had taken a roll of paper towel from the bathroom and was trying to clean up so I could go into the pharmacy  and get something for the pain and see if I could get something to stop the bleeding till I could get home that night.    I learned that nasal spray is the best thing to stop bleeding.  It shrinks the blood vessels slowing the blood flow and allowing  the blood to clot.  Now my higher power was taking care of me that day because I had a concussion and the loss of blood was taking a toll on me.  But I was determined to get on that plane and get myself home.  I ended up in the bathroom of Mc Donald’s applying   nasal spray to my head that was a thick goo of blood and hair.  (That was when I had hair.)  I tried to get my head down in the sink to run water over it when two ladies came in and saw me.  There was quite a lot of excitement and I am trying to tell them I am OK, they wanted to call 911 and insisted on knowing who done this to me.   By the time I got them calmed down and told them I hit my head on the wing brace of the plane, one ran out and got her friend the nurse who was waiting at the table for them. Now the three of them are making a hug fuss over me and helping me with the nasal spray that by the way burns like hell when it hits the open wound. I thanked them and told them I must go catch my plane.  I got the car back and went to sit down and wait till the plane boarded when I became ill and light headed.  Again I did not want anyone one to know so I sat there as if all would be OK if no one found out I was an idiot waiting for a place to pass out completely.   Once on the plane the flight attendant noticed my hat was bloody ,even though it was green and just look wet if you were not paying attention, she was.  It was a struggle to get her to leave me on the plane.  To keep my wits on the long flight home I mentally beat myself up for not going to the hospital and praying I would be alright.  The shock of the injury has now completely wore off and the pain is unbearable.  The attendant did get me an ice pack and aspirin ,by this time the blood had slowed to a slow ooze.  But my head hurt and all I wanted to do is sleep.  I did keep myself a wake and made it home where my family got me to the hospital.  To this day have a groove  in my head that I can lay my finger down in it.  I have no idea how I made it through that.  I still think that there is no age limit on idiocies as I have proved this to myself.

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