That time in Utah when…


Utah license plate
I saw a Utah license plate this autumn in Albany

UM United States Minor Outlying Islands are “eight United States insular areas in the Pacific Ocean (Baker Island, Howland Island, Jarvis Island, Johnston Atoll, Kingman Reef, Midway Atoll, Palmyra Atoll, and Wake Island) and one in the Caribbean Sea (Navassa Island)…

“Except for Palmyra Atoll, all of these islands are unincorporated, unorganized territories of the United States. As of 2019, none of the islands have any permanent residents.”

UT Utah, a state in the western US. Capital and largest city: Salt Lake City. The state is known for the 28 million acre-feet of briny water that comprises the Great Salt Lake. It is the sixth-largest lake in the US, after the Great Lakes. The second-largest lake that sits completely within the United States borders is significantly more saline than other large lakes.

A story

In 1994, I did something fairly stupid in Utah that affects me to this day. I attended the ASBDC conference in Snowbird. The place is 29 miles from Salt Lake International Airport, located near the town of Alta in Little Cottonwood Canyon.

Alta’s base elevation is 8,530 ft (2,600 m). It was beautiful. Behind the site of the conference was a picturesque mountain. Since the event had not started yet, and I had nothing better to do, I started climbing up, just to get a better view.

Eh, I decided to climb up a little farther, and maybe just a tad more. Then I got so far up that I figured I should keep on climbing. I was just pulling on rocks and branches. If they withstood being pulled on thrice, I’d use them to pull myself up.

Just as I was about to reach the top, I pulled on a branch three times. For good measure, I tried it once more and it came loose, falling down the mountain. Yikes, that could have me tumbling – I’ve since checked – 2,538 ft or 774 m.

What goes up…

Now the descent. I tried to brake myself from going too fast. I got maybe a third of the way down and I began sliding. I wasn’t too worried until my left leg got caught in a hole, while the rest of my body weight was going downhill.

My left knee starting hurting, a LOT. Somehow, I crawled the rest of my way down, then the few dozen meters to where we were staying. I came across some I knew from New York State and he drove me to an urgent care place. This was the first time I’d been to one.

An urgent care locale is for when you really need some medical care, but you don’t need the lifesaving care from an emergency room. The doctor told me that I had a torn meniscus in my left knee. He gave me the X-rays to bring to a doctor in Albany to get fixed, which happened.

That knew, though, has never been the same. I wear a brace on it, especially if I’m walking any distance. It is probably arthritic, and I experience pain there regularly.

To soothe my pain, here’s the website of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

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Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

5 thoughts on “That time in Utah when…”

  1. It is always easier for me to go up than down. One reason is my fear of heights. When going up it looks fine, when I turn around my adrenaline kicks in and I have to go slow or grab someone’s hand. So sorry about your knee. – Margy

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