heels on fire: 03/17/06

Friday, March 17, 2006

Friday evening stock taking.

Even in a country like Ireland, it is not often that you come across someone willing to risk running over 650 kms through the tropical heat of Kerala, past lazing ducks, striking labourers, bathing elephants, idling pensioners and open hooch shops to Kanyakumari. And you are not even running to a pub.

Here we have Pete willing to return to run through Kerala (most outsiders usually away from after the first encounter with the friendly Malayalee wayside philosophers - ask Tipu Sultan) in May at a steady chug of at least 25-30kms a day?

I can't think of many parallels in adventure sport. I am reliably told that Paul B, one of our legendary friends, climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, clad in thin muslin attire, rubber sandals and cotton socks; and had all his climbing gear in a polythene bag. Then he is a veteran of many conquests, though not often involving mountains, sandals and muslin. Rubber, maybe.

Mousa, an Ingushetian friend of mine, tells me about his uncle who polished off a bottle of fine Russian vodka in Russian winter and gathered Dutch courage to save some more money to buy another bottle of vodka by opting to ride for free on a well ventilated goods' train instead of a regular, warm passenger train. He lived to tell the tale, aided in no small measure, by the fine Russian vodka.

But tales of agony in the cold are not the best comparison for Pete's venture. Tulika might insist that test cricket in the sub-continent is a close parallel.

Still, we need better stories...over the weekend and over the weeks ahead.


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