A zig for our zags…

October 14, 2010

As I’ve mentioned before, there is a bit of planning to our ventures and then there’s also a whole lot of looking at a map and “let’s go there!” excitement that propels us.  In this fashion, we were once again heading in a zig zag easterly fashion towards Lake Chapala, the largest lake in Mexico.  We had heard mixed reviews ranging from that it was beautiful and fishable to that it was nasty and polluted.  We decided to go check it out for ourselves.

The ride from San Miguel took us about 2 days and we were cruising along nicely, covering some great miles those days.  I had woken up one morning with an incredibly sore back, which I passed off on having pulled a muscle stretching the night before.  Over the course of the day the pain mysteriously got worse and spread down into my hip sockets, making it quite difficult to ride.  We reached the lake later on that afternoon and scrambled to find a camp spot so I could lay down and get some rest.  As I fell asleep, I knew I had a slight fever but passed it off again and nestled in, excited for our ride around the lake in the up coming days.  From here on out I will spare you the icky details, but I came down with what we self diagnosed as Dengue Fever.  Man oh man was I sick.  I can’t remember a time in my life that I was this sick.  The symptoms are those that offer no relief and after 2 and a half days I was still laying in the field we had set up camp in, barely able to pick my head up off my Thermarest.  After getting some fluids in me, Kurt, who had been keeping excellent watch over me, moved me into the shade and packed up all of our gear.  I rode in a delirious state the 3 or so kilometers to the closest town of Ocotlan, where we holed up in the nearest motel we could find.  There I immediately plopped in the bed and slept off the fever for another 2 and a half days.

Dengue.  There’s the long and the short of it.  It sucks.  It’s pretty much unavoidable in a way as its caused by mosquitoes.  There is no vaccine for it and I’ve read there are no specific antibiotics for it either.  Just have to wait it out which we did.

Without Kurt I really don’t know what I would have done through this time, as I was so incapacitated by the symptoms of the fever.  Everyday I feel lucky to travel with him, but in these days his companionship was absolutely necessary.  Everyday we look out for each other and help one another, but this time proved to be the icing on the cake of icing that is our friendship, partnership and love for one another.

So after all this dillydallying, or what seemed to be after lying around for nearly a week, I was most excited to hold some food in me enough to be confident to carry on.  And here I learned another new thing about bike touring…you can get sick and then you can get better, better to the point of not being sick any more, but getting better to the point of being as strong as you were before you got sick or being able to ride the way you could before is a whole other story.  This takes much longer and it was frustrating to me to find this out.  I was so ready to hop back on the bike and pedal, pedal, pedal and make up for what I felt was a lost week, but my body just wasn’t ready for that.  So we took our time for the next few days and truly soaked up the lake and it’s surrounding towns.

**At the time of writing this I would like to convey that I am 100% okay and back on track and riding with vigor and there is absolutely no need to worry.

 

How chilaquiles get done tentside. An excellent way to start the day...

Kurt joins the daily hustle and bustle...

Mexico MTB pride...

A beautiful ending to the day, but I presume it was at some point in this field that the little bugger passed along the illness...

 

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2 Responses to “A zig for our zags…”

  1. Great Article, Great Blog, and Great Photos.

    Gad I stumbled onto you cool site.

    Check out my site at http://www.ChapalaClub.com dedicated to Lake Chapala and to everyone who may want to know more about living, working, and playing there.

    Sid Grosvenor

  2. Anna said

    Sorry to hear you’ve been sick. Sounds very nasty but glad to hear you are better now.

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