Friday, 10 February 2012

The Beguiling Chilli of Doom, and....Dire Straits Never Sung About This One!

To be honest, I knew the danger was there right from the word go.

Readers of yesterday's blog will remember that last night I had some very lovely people over for a Curry night. What you won't know (unless I mentioned it in yesterday's blog and have forgotten) is that I cunningly (some might say greedily) saved all the leftovers and put them in a plastic tub to have for lunch today. They don't call me Larry Leftovers for nothing!

Incidentally, that's also the reason they don't call me.

So, today I came home and warmed up my ungodly mish-mash of assorted Curry and Naan Breads in the microwave. Four minutes later, I was tucking in. It tasted fine, and I was enjoying it very much - some of it for the second time. And then, there it was.

About an inch and a half long, green, and looking like it wouldn't hurt a fly, a chilli stared up at me innocently from out of between the rice and sauce and assorted unidentifiable meats. At the time however, I did not realise that it was a chilli because the part of my brain used to recall things couldn't be heard over the much louder part of my brain that tells me when I am hungry. So although recall was saying "Isn't that a chilli? That looks like a chilli - didn't Jerry have chilli's in his curry last night?", it was drowned out by the shouting of my appetite receptors saying, " HUNGRY! FOOD! EAT FOOD, FOOD GOOD - EAT FOOD! HUNGRY!!"

So I scooped up this green, obviously edible piece of miscellaneous food and popped it in my mouth. As I chewed and swallowed, the thought "Ooh, what's that?" passed briefly by - but by then it was too late.

A burning sensation tore up my throat, and filled my head. My tongue felt as if it was on fire, my eyes streamed tears of scorched agony, and my nose run like a snotty toddlers. Overpowered by a the intense heat in my mouth and throat, I stumbled to the kitchen and grabbed a pint of water and gulped it down.

I then grabbed two more pints, and did the same, and only then did the fire start to subside. I was still gasping slightly but the effects gradually wore off. Obviously I was able to finish off the rest of the Curry - once I had checked that no more concealed chillis lurked within. Next time, I shall be more vigilant......

This weekend I am going to Cardiff to watch Wales play Scotland in the Six Nations Rugby tournament. Because of this, I will be unable to do my usual 7 mile walk on Sunday. However, not to be denied, I formulated a cunning plan; I would walk further on other walks I can do this weekend.

I got the opportunity to take a walk this afternoon, as I finished work at 2:30. By the time I got home, changed, and got ready to go it was 3pm. In my head, I planned to walk for two hours - an hour outward, and then turn around and an hour back. That way I would get back home before sunset.

I set out at a blistering pace, as I estimated that in an hour I could walk almost 5 miles. A 10 mile round trip would be a good effort. I made good progress, and covered the first 4 miles in 50 minutes. I was prepared to stop and turn around at 5 miles, but then I saw a sign for the village of Stourpaine a further mile on.

I looked to the Sky, to see the position of the Sun. Based on my current pace, I reckoned I could make it to Stourpaine and back before the Sun set. Motivated, I strode on. Although my feet were starting to complain, I ignored them and kept going. And after another mile, I reached Stourpaine. I had covered Six miles in 1hr and 15 minutes. But I had no time to congratulate myself, I had to turn around and get back.

Now I was in a race against the Sun. But I was tiring, and my body was starting to rebel. Nonetheless I set off. Well, I had to - I had no other way of getting home.

At first, I didn't make very good progress as I kept getting stones in my Wellies. I have no idea how stones get in my Wellies as they come half way up my calf, and have no obvious holes in them. Still, they got in - and I had to keep stopping to empty them out. All the while, the Earth kept turning and the Sun kept sinking towards the Horizon.

Stone free, I carried on. I only had to stop one more time, and that was to answer the call of nature. Even then I wanted to pee quickly, as I was obsessed with beating the light. I resumed my walk - but my pace had slowed.

I knew it was slowing, and I tried to step up the pace - but my body was fighting against me. If I paused for any reason, my feet screamed out in burning agony. My calves and hamstrings were verging on cramping up, and my mouth was dry. At one point I farted, and followed through a little.....

Still I carried on. The path before me seemed to stretch on endlessly, and I started to feel every stone press into the sole of my boots. My body wanted to stop, I wanted to stop - but a tiny voice in my head whispered "Just keep going, just keep going"

The last mile seemed to go on forever. I was half hobbling, half stumbling - but I would not stop. I had walked so far, I had to keep going. By the time I reached my home I was dead on my feet. I checked the distance I had done on my app and it read 11.98 miles.

With a groan, I dragged my aching legs in three laps of my garden, just do I could get the total distance up to 12 miles. I staggered through the door, stopped the app, and nearly collapsed.

12 miles in 2hrs and 38 minutes - and there was still sunlight (just). But my feet are sore, my legs are sore, I'm sore. I will do this walk again tomorrow - but at a much slower pace. I shall allow at least 3 hours to do this walk in.

To do it again at the pace I did today would be madness. Never mind Dire Straits classic "Walk of Life", that was a walk of death!

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