The haunting specter of my soon-to-be backpacking adventure has been looming over me, in a Casper-the-friendly-Ghost kind of way, gently reminding me that I really should start exercising now (as in, immediately), or I'll be sorry later (as in, next month when I am trudging and gasping my way along the trail in Kauai and kicking myself for not getting into shape when I had the chance).
Hmmm, maybe I should call him Casper the friendly Coach.
Anyway, I must have been under the spirit's influence this past weekend when I made the decision to walk not once, but TWICE around the Rose Bowl, because that was sheer insanity. A single lap around the Rose Bowl is three miles, so two laps are (hang on, let the English major get out her calculator)... SIX whole miles!
Naturally, things went wrong.
The first lap went fine, and that was actually the beginning of my trouble. See, if it had been miserable, I'd have quit before I started the second lap, and thus saved myself the suffering that awaited me. But no. I was lulled into a false sense of "Oh, this isn't so bad" by the fact that it wasn't so bad. And I embarked on round two.
I hadn't gone far when my left foot began to hurt.
Specifically, it felt as though I had a hangnail, or a sharp pebble, sticking into my toes. I'd stop every now and then to shake my foot and readjust my shoe, but the pain wouldn't go away. For those of you wondering why I didn't take off
my shoe to better assess the situation, well, there's a perfectly good answer to your question, and it goes like this: I am lazy.
Are you satisfied? Then I'll continue.
So I was still a fair distance away from the car, when I had to stop again. This time, when I looked down at my feet, I noticed something weird about my right
shoe. Keep in mind that my right foot was not the one in pain. I saw a red stain on the material close to the front of the shoe.
That's odd, I thought. I don't remember my shoe having red trim... wait a second.
Agh! It was BLOOD!!!
I straightened up and looked around. I was at least 3/4 of a mile from the car. Great, I thought. My foot is bleeding enough to actually soak through
my sock all the way to my shoe, and I have to keep on walking. Perfect.
But what really annoyed me was the fact that my bleeding foot didn't even hurt. The other
, completely NOT bleeding foot, however, was getting more painful by the second. Talk about typical.
Finally, I made it back to the car, where I took off my headphones in preparation for opening the car door, sitting down, and taking off my bloody shoe... at which point I discovered that my necklace, in utter defiance of every known law of physics, had succeeded in entangling itself with the wire of my headphones. I actually had to take the necklace off in order to get free of the headphones, and that's when I saw that the necklace had a knot in it.
How it got a knot in it when it was around my neck the entire time is beyond even my admittedly astounding mental powers, so you probably shouldn't even bother trying to figure it out.
Anyway, I spent the next few minutes muttering to myself and trying to sort out the necklace from the headphones, all the while wondering how horrible my foot would look when I took off my shoe. I was not pleased at having to delay my investigation due to my stupid necklace (or my talented necklace, depending on your point of view).
Finally, finally, I was ready to examine my foot. I pulled off the shoe and sock, and just as I had suspected—remember, formidable mental powers!—there was a lot of blood.
What I failed to find was the gaping hole in my foot that would have accounted for the amount of blood.
Instead I found a small—one might even say, tiny—cut on the side of my second toe, a cut which was made by my third toe's nail. A cut that was barely visible once I'd wiped the blood away. Talk about adding insult to injury.
Or, talk about anti-climactic. Take your pick.
As I drove home, I thought that my Rose Bowl experience does not bode well for my backpacking adventure. However, it didn't exactly surprise me; after all, it was pretty much in line with my past backpacking experiences, which have been fraught with ill-fitting shoes, sore legs, horrendous blisters, bruised toenails (three) that eventually fell off, and tears.
All right, Casper, what can I say... Just bring it on.