Wednesday, 12 January 2011

How to scare yourself stupid in two easy moves

Step one: Go for your usual three miles stroll

The swelling on my knee has gone and now it’s just a beautiful shade of black/purple/blue. It’s no longer painful to move or walk, but I do still occasionally catch myself out if I kneel down. Or turn over in bed (apparently, I’m crying in my sleep every time, but my sleep isn’t being disturbed, so that’s good…) so I went for a walk.

I knew it would be tricky getting out of the estate to the cycle path and back, but was disappointed to find the cycle path itself somewhat slippery and bearing in mind recent events, I decided to shorten my walk and take the marshes path. This wasn’t much better, as it turned out. In fact, the only moment of ‘hairy arm-waving’ (just so that’s clear!) was on the muddy path, which turned out to be sheet ice, not wet mud. Ooops. However, no one was around to witness and I didn’t hit the deck, so I continued. The cycle path, when I returned to it, was a mixture of frozen, partly defrosted snow and sheet ice, but not thick enough to wear my microspikes (which I’d left at home) so I gingerly made my way home.

Step two: Practice packing your pack

When I got home, I’d only covered two miles and was bored with a couple of hours to kill before darling hubby came home for lunch, so I decided to practice packing the pack.

It’s amazing where you can shave a few grams off here and there. All those useful packets suddenly become redundant, map covers carefully unstuck (this felt like vandalism to me, I can’t even write my name in the cover of a book, in pencil).

Then came the great weigh in. Oh grief, 22lbs. Only to then remember I hadn’t counted my Platypus, with water. Or the full amount of food, only having ordered a couple of meals to try so far. Then I noticed the sun cream and midge repellent sitting on the shelf. I’d left out the matches too!

More shaving required.

I’ll probably have nightmares tonight, as well as pain.


Laura said...

More shaving? That'll be the 'hairy arm waving' problem solved then...........
My solution with the heaviness is to start by packing nothing at all, then eventually leaving out most of those 'neat' little things you 'might' make use of, for clothing take one to wear and one spare, and everything must have at least two uses.

Louise said...

Funnily enough, one of my many nicknames at school was gorilla...

I shall definitely be lying everything out on the floor and asking my trusty sidekick to look over it with me to see what else I can leave out.

I've also come up with a cunning plan to get permission to research a new rucksack. Watch this space!

Gayle said...

One good way of deciding what you really need and what you don't is to pop out (if you can get the chance and the weather for it at some point before May) for a couple of days, with a wild-camp. Then work on the basis that, with the exception of your first-aid kit and your waterproofs, if you didn't use it in 24 hours then you don't need it.

Aside from the 'what can I leave out' question, there's also the question of what lotions, potions and toiletries you can take in smaller quantities.

Louise said...

That's great advice, thanks. I'm hoping for a trip in April, so that will be an ideal opportunity. It'll be interesting to see what I can live without that I currently think is vital!