Waiting for the Stone

We are approaching our fifth day here in Erwin, TN waiting for Mel to pass a kidney stone so that we can get back on the trail! We have done virtually everything there is to do in a very small town like Erwin and are getting quite restless. 

We have walked everywhere! (Too bad the miles don’t count!) On Sunday, we walked 2 miles to the hospital so that Mel could get a definitive diagnosis for his periodic, but excruciating pain of the previous 5 days. After a CT scan, blood tests and urine tests, they confirmed Mel’s ‘diagnosis’ of a kidney stone–which he has had numerous times before. After we were done at the hospital, we walked back a mile for the Sunday buffet at the Choo Choo Cafe, then another half mile to the Walgreen’s to fill his prescriptions and get more ‘foot fixes’ for me.

A metatarsal support and a toe wrap from Walgreen’s to possibly alleviate some foot pain.

On Monday, we walked 2 miles along Erwin’s scenic bike trail to the outskirts of town in order to get to the Food Lion where we could resupply for the next leg of our journey. On our walk back into town along the business section, we spent a leisurely day going into all the little stores–Dollar General, Family Dollar, CVS, and Walgreen’s (again!). We also stopped at Wendy’s for drinks and to use their wifi, and then to a Subway for lunch where I bought a footlong sandwich for the first time ever!

Some of my favorite trail snacks–Chex mix, cashews, Nature Valley bars, Mott’s fruit /vegetable chewies, yogurt covered craisins, Rice Krispie treats and Slim Jims


Erwin’s scenic bike/walking path


The public library in Erwin–a converted train depot


Breakfast at the Huddle House!

This morning we had breakfast at the Huddle House for the second day in a row, then headed off to the post office to mail back some more weight–small things that we either no longer wanted or needed (so I could justify carrying a teeny tiny container of powder and maybe not ‘sleep sticky for the rest of our adventure!). From the post office, we headed to the local library–a lovely old building that used to be a train depot; built in 1925. As we entered the building, we were greeted by the library cat, Story–a friendly little Tabby who seemed to enjoy all the attention. 


The library cat, named Story

Since we didn’t know how much longer we’d be holed up in Erwin, we browsed their collection of books for sale so we’d have something to read. Unfortunately, the collection was housed in a dark, dark room in the basement. It was a little bit creepy and not conducive to seeing things, but we both managed to find something to read for a grand total of 50 cents! The book I got was a very thin paperback (in case I have to carry it in my pack) and was written in 1955! Yikes!

Relaxing at the library

After the library, it was time to eat again so we hit the Hawg ‘n Dawg, a yummy little BBQ place right on the corner of Main Street and Love. Be sure to go there if you visit Erwin! From there, we walked across the street to a little 1950’s style beauty shop so that I could get a trail cut. After all that exhausting work, it was time for a little more R&R at the local coffee shop, Steel Rails.  

By the end of our four days here, there wasn’t much left do–except maybe walk back to the Walgreen’s and buy more comfort food (like we did yesterday!)–ice cream and microwave popcorn! 
And that, my friends, is how we are spending another day in Paradise waiting for the stone!

Affiliate Disclosure

This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!

To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.

Comments 2

  • imin2w8s : May 28th

    Hope he passes his stone soon! 🙁

    • Jeanne Church : May 29th

      Thanks! We’re still waiting! But will see a urologist on Monday in Johnson City.


What Do You Think?