There are eight miles to go to the Ferry Terminal in
Vallejo when Bill sets out to do today's walk. This,
when added to his previous hiking of 113 miles, will
result in a 121 mile hike over 14 different days.
Entering Rodeo at 11:20 AM. It's the
last town along the route before Vallejo.
A Rodeo Cowboy, perhaps? Seen along
Rodeo's main drag, Parker Avenue, at noon.
A few blocks after passing the cowboy, while walking on a
very new smooth sidewalk, Bill felt a strange crack
sensation in his right foot. About 90% of the time,
such sensations work themselves out and dissipate, so
Bill decided to walk on. He was soon in an industrial
area with refineries and other fenced-off areas like
this one, on both sides of the road. There really was
no place to stop for a couple of miles. Sidewalks
disappeared, and Bill was walking on the side of the road.
The refineries ended, and Bill could now see the Amtrak rail line
and mud flats in the foreground. Vallejo, the end of the walk,
was now in view on bluffs beyond the waters of the bay!
Grasslands appeared, interspersed with some industrial
facilities. Bill's foot began to hurt quite a bit, as he
walked from right to left through this valley, leaving the
valley on the uphill road seen on the far left of the photo.
Bill gets his first glimpse of the Carquinez Bridge at the top of
the hill. It is just above the tree tops. The time? About 1:15 PM.
The bridge looms large.
At about 3:20 PM, Bill came to a vista point, where he stopped to eat
his lunch. The bridge was just half a mile away and was in full view!
Bill could see Vallejo on the bluffs across the water, and
the ferry terminal where he planned for his hike to end.
After finishing his lunch, his foot was in great pain, though, and he
was unable to walk! He realized he could not have reached the ferry
terminal by nightfall, and reluctantly he had Larry pick him up and
he, for now, ended his journey. The next day he found out a bone in
his foot had broken! With less than five miles remaining on this trip
he planned to continue and finish the hike when his foot healed.
August 29, 2015
It took Bill's foot about two months to heal, plus another month for his foot to strengthen. By this time, he had gotten very out of shape. In late summer he had undertaken an exercise program to regain his strength and stamina. He expected to be able to finish this hike in early-to-mid fall, and to increase his hiking to its usual full strength by spring, a year after his accident.
September 17, 2015
This week Bill was walking two miles an hour, covering 1.8 miles in the morning
every day, and another 1.8 miles every day in the afternoon. Not bad for a recovering 68-year-old!
October 25, 2015
Bill's daily mileage is climbing! Today he walked 4.5 miles. He is not fast, but over the past month he can tell his gait has been getting stronger.
Bill sprained his back making walking painful. He wasn't able to get out and walk regularly, so he got out of shape again. He also started getting infections in his right leg due to poor circulation and his leg started to swell. He had to take antibiotics for his leg.
With antibiotics, Bill's leg started to heal, but then a major blister appeared on his leg and he had to go into the hospital for stronger antibiotics via IV. This was not the way he wanted to start the new year! He continued to experience pain in his back, and he also developed a callus on his right foot that was painful. He had a podiatrist remove the callus, but putting weight on his foot after the removal caused lots of pain and he wasn't able to do any walking.
February through May, 2016
Bill's foot and leg were slowly healing, but he still had pain and he wasn't able to walk more than a few blocks. Then on April 25, he fell, had two seizers in the Emergency Room, and his health went down hill from there. He never left the hospital. The muscle disease Polymyositis that he had been fighting for ten years started attacking his body. He had breathing problems and his throat muscles wouldn't allow him to eat, so he was on a breathing tube and a feeding tube. He then developed kidney problems. When the doctor wanted to start dialysis on his kidney he said no. He had had enough! He didn't foresee any happy days in his future, so he asked that the breathing and food tube be removed. His kidney quickly deteriorated and three days later he died peacefully in his sleep on May 17, 2016. Sadly, he never finished those last five miles of his walk.
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