Pittsfield seniors contracted Shoreline. Shoreline also contracted with the Manistee seniors, so we really have two busses of people on this trip. To say that our bus has been disappointed in the on the ground decisions made by the company would be an understatement. When we exited the train we were introduced to our new bus driver, Mario. Yesterday he was elevated to Super Mario. He followed the back roads and took us on the most beautiful scenic tour. He chose to not follow the other bus and really show us the country. We drove through the most colorful landscape and stopped at several spots that were not on the plan. Navaho Dome and Pictures in the Rock. Rather than stop at a chain lunch stop we stopped where there were two great hamburger stands and an art store.
This is the beginning of the story of Ruth. Ruth finished her lunch and strolled to the art store where her legs became entangled in a dog on the porch. Ruth fell and hurt her elbow. The bus had the choice to drive back many miles or forward to Bryce Canyon. We opted for Bryce canyon which surely would have medical services at the Ranger Station. For about two hours Ruth’s arm swelled while she iced it and we all quietly discussed what would our insurance cover and did the trip insurance we bought cover this accident ( the answer is No) . When we arrived at the Bryce Canyon Lodge they acted like they had never heard of an emergency. No, there is no emergency medical support in the park… An ambulance , the patient needs to walk into the lodge and request one. Oh and by the way the hospital is thirty miles back. Meanwhile one of our seniors took this opportunity to go into a full blown breathing attack. The rest of us were hustled on to a bus to tour the canyon.
The canyon is beautiful, I enjoyed walking along the paths until there was no railing and my fear of heights kicked in. We visited inspiration point and sunset point. The erosion that shaped much of this canyon is frost and ice. Nine months out of the year the temperature In the canyon drops to below freezing at night. Any moisture around the rocks freezes and expands, eventually cracking rock and creating great “hoo doos”.
We returned to the lodge for dinner. Our breathing patient was still rocky after several breathing treatments ( self administered) and oxygen administered by the park ranger. Ruth was transported to a hospital in the direction of our next stop where a dislocated elbow and broken bone were treated. She traveled with us to the hotel where she will try to make arrangements to go home and have surgery on the elbow.