"I know how it is," says Walton. "On September 14 I have to go back to San Diego and become a professional basketball player."
"You're not...no...hey, you're not...?"
Walton makes camp along the Lyell River, about 25 miles from Yosemite Valley, his destination. He slings his food in a sleeping-bag sack over a high tree limb to protect it from bears, which he has heard, but does not quite believe, are around.
"Hey, what happened to your foot in Portland, anyway?" Dave asks Bill.
"You name it," says Bill with a big laugh.
"Oh. You know I was in Portland last year when the Blazers were going to training camp, and
ran a picture of you playing the drums in Egypt with the Dead."
Walton laughs some more. "Yeah. They didn't much like me up in Portland then. But, hey, I did what I could. I was in a cast. What could I have done in camp? Pass out the aspirins?"
"Let me ask you. If what happened with your foot hadn't happened...?"
"I'd still be in Portland."