Sunday, May 25, 2008

[hiatus] not for too long - farewell


Once I was crazy enough to try bobsleigh - well actually luge, feet first.

It's an interesting phenomenon - once you're over that lip at the top, there is only one way down and there is no choice but to lie back and let the skids become part of you, using miniscule bodyshifts to minimize bends, on e false move and I think you can imagine.

Therefore, even though the heart was doing awful things, you had to suppress it and get the breathing going for when you hit the compression bends. There was one particular bend to the left and I remember the overhanging trees as I came into a short straight and the skids came back to the fall line and picked up speed - you couldn't sneeze or move the head except to strain the eyes downwards but in so doing, this lost speed.

Fat lot that mattered to me, speed - perfectly happy to lop a few seconds off and live. Halfway down the straight and it became fairly obvious that ... er ... there was almost a right angle left at the end [or so it seemed] and to go from semi-vertical to semi-horizontal in a microsecond was going to do interesting things to the metabolism.

At this point I thought of putting the legs out to stop before the turn but then realized that the walls would snap the legs back behind me and anyway here it was ... aaagh. The turn was bad enough, crushing the chest but when I shot up to the ridge, hanging centrifugally before flattening out to the fall line again with the skids wobbling left and right, it seemed it might be a good idea to ... um ... stop if you don't mind ... please?

Vague feelings now of high up near the ridge on the left, snap back, high up on the right, back to the line and then the final drop where it felt like taking off before the tube became gradually shallow and then severely reversed upwards and the blades finally stopped.

Um ... right. Exhilarating? For some perhaps but you could keep it as far as I was concerned. Count me among the spineless please - I'd prefer not to meet my lunch coming up on my way down. With thoughts like these, the base of the chairlift was beckoning again and there was a free chair.

Seems to me there's a huge difference between you brave people who go on the Oblivion, Megaphobia and so on and actually trust the damned thing not to come off whilst you're flung out into space. In my case, it was always going to be in my hands what happened and somehow that was more comforting.

Tomorrow is entirely out of my hands.

I'd like to sign off now and hand over to Colin Campbell for some time, trusting and hoping you won't shun the blog but will come to read some of the guest posts. One way or another I'll let you know what happened. Thank you so much too, those friends who put up with the maudlin mood in the last few weeks and stuck with me.

Cheers and let's leave on a good note:

Thousands of private counselors are offering free services to troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with mental health problems, jumping in to help because the military is short on therapists.

Now that's altruism for you. So don't miss out - apply today.


11 comments:

CherryPie said...

Take care James, I will be thinking of you xx

BenefitScroungingScum said...

Good luck James, we'll all be here when you are ready and able to come back to blogland. BG x

Swearing Mother said...

James my friend, take good care of yourself.

Lord James Bigglesworth said...

Last note - thanks, ladies.

Andrew Allison said...

I think we all need a break from blogging every now and again. I thought I could give it up - however I came back. You know from our private correspondence that I hold you in the highest regard - even though I did have a go at you earlier this year. I look forward to your return. In the meantime - take very good care of yourself.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Yes, take care, dear James. We'll all be here when you get back to blogging. xx

sally in norfolk said...

Take care and have fun look forward to reading more soon x

jmb said...

I never can understand how anyone can actually go down the luge run for the first time. Well maybe the first, but not the second. Out of control, lovely. Not my thing at all.

I hope it lasts for the briefest time James, that out of control feeling. See you soon, I am convinced of it.

Gracchi said...

see you soon mate

katekatekatekate said...

Have a great adventure James, I look forward to your return. ;-)

katekatekatekate said...

Have a great adventure James, I look forward to your return. ;-)