January 31, 2006

# 35

Had a bright idea about how best to extricate the head and sinuses jam from my weekend: I took up a mate's offer to go hiking; not the 'let's drive the car to the top of a hill, put on our name brand hiking boots and prance like we're auditioning for a cooking show for thirty minutes until we reach the peak.' It was closer to the real deal, with reasonable height, inclement weather and even knee-high snow thrown in to make the experience a challenge; emphasis on the cha.

And so it went. Saturday morning usually equates to a sleep-in 'til 10:30 for me. Can't figure out exactly why but my body rarely cares about the state of the day until then. However, the electro memo to my phone stipulated a 6:30 am cacophony of knocking on the front door would be forthcoming, which meant a shower before dawn and a lucid cup of coffee should motivation permit. The mobile phone was flickering in the key of green at 6:10, precisely as my head peered round for the towel. The message read: 'We're downstairs. Are you ready?''

At precisely 6:30, sans a gullet of Hawaiian hazelnut coffee, which triggers a reaction deep within similar to sparks and a fully functioning engine, I staggered outside in my name brand hiking boots (Rossi: made and bought in Adelaide, Australia [shouts out to Brooky]), my 2L name brand camelback and about seventeen layers of clothes. The journey from the apartment's door to the passenger door of a feisty Japanese built Japanese style hot rod was the coldest four metres I had walked for a while. Luckily, the Japanese built Japanese style hot rod was equipped with a heater and two chatty heads, paving the way for a sleepless journey to a convenience store and the purchase of enough energy in cans and plastic wrapping for an army of one.

Approximately ten minutes into the trip the temperature reading on a sign by the side of the road flickered -1. An hour later, as we arrived in Somewhereville north of the original temperature reading, my guess was that it was a degree or two cooler. It tends to happen the closer to snow you get, you know?

A brief perusal by six sets of eyes led to the same conclusion: there was a thorough lack of snow. I danced with myself in grand Idol style and then added a skin of clothes before blowing the first of countless nostril loads of snot along the path. My reasoning for tissues being obsolete in such a situation was reached thanks to an omnipresent condition I can't seem to shake: intuition.

The pace was as steady as the forest was predictable with neither an animal nor helping of nature's finest white powder to send me scurrying back to the car. "Hoorah!" thought I as we reached the first peak about an hour later, most of us wondering whether the gale force wind would cease at some stage later. That, of course, was a guaranteed no as noses dripped, two-beanied heads sweated, multiple-layered clothes kept bodies' cores warm as sweat raced against gravity to meet and greet the wind.

To say that I froze my bollocks off would be a disservice to the testicle docking I was given. I swear in the name of Fabio's wire brush face that even last year's snow mountain hike, in actual snow, wasn't as challenging as what we were in the middle of.

Anyway, long story as viewed front-on: we hiked to three peaks, where views in all directions were stereotypically postcard material, made adventurous crossings on narrow sections of granite, had lunch, chewed the fat, traversed down steep and tricky sections using ropes, I died, was resurrected, I died again (possibly losing a lung in the process), I was resurrected again and finished what we started some seven hours and change later, all to the collective approval of roaring silence once we had returned to the cars. It was another awesome winter hike in my adopted country and one that I thoroughly enjoyed seeing on the highlight reel on my computer at home.

More's the pity, really, that I pressed the delete all function on my camera the following day without copying the photos to hard drive on Saturday.

What's more, following a gingerly few hours of walking around with friends on Sunday, where my wife and I ventured to some second-hand stores to seek potentially worthy additions to our furniture collection for our new place in Adelaide, I managed to mangle the front end of the fourbee (and side mirror) while reversing into our friends' ultrafuckennarrow parking space. As embarrassing as that is, what's even worse is that it was the driver's side. Fuck's sake and all that.

I hereby swear to never again use the 'looking over the left shoulder' reversing technique when side mirrors work as well as any mirrors without effects. *shakes head in disgust*

If bad things come in threes, I'm ready for what's in store.

P.S. The torturous hike in Arctic conditions cleared whatever ailed me.
P.P.S. Long live stupidity!


Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

I wish I came in threes.

I would have to buy more tissues though.

Kaufman said...

It's great to have you back, Ultra. You didn't miss much. How's the health?

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Slightly below average.

Feeling like an old man; more peverse/less mobile.

Thankfully these two factors cancel each other out lest i become dangerously predatory

Kaufman said...

A motorised wheelchair would be swish. I used to dream about Stephen Hawkins' sloppy seconds; discarded groupies past their use by date.

It all seemed so self-destructive but a professional friend helped me out. Together we built a wheelchair with a 1.3L engine. Still waiting on the tail to arrive.