13th August 2012, 09:42 PM
A Trekking Pole (kind of) Short Story ref the 'Buying equipment' thread
Namaste, I wrote this some time ago on another forum, I am relatively new to Trekinifo.com.
The had been a discussion that turned heated regarding the (silly) use of trekking poles as used by many tourists/trekkers in Nepal, in my opinion. As the discussion got more heated I thought I would try to diffuse the situation somewhat with a true story that happened to me and was marginally connected to the subject of trekking poles.
A Trekking Pole (kind of) Short Story
"Over thirty years ago while living and working in Nepal I was posted to a rural area not near any trekking route and as any westerner would have been at that kind of location and era was often considered a curiosity and attracted the attention of the locals wherever I went. One day I had set off for a hike somewhere and was happily walking along in an area new to me and noticed a group of about 10 or 12 Nepalis working in a field about 50 meters or so from me and slightly below my elevation. It was a beautiful sunny day and the colors of the saris and clothes of the Nepalis really stood out. They had noticed me too and had stopped work to look at this stranger and strange looking person, I imagine thinking….who is this weird looking guy with big boots, a large red backpack and longish unkempt hair, and what is he doing here??.....
I don’t know if any of you readers of TT have noticed in Nepal what we in America call “bumble bees”---black and yellow stripped, kind of furry looking bees about 2 or 3 times the size of regular honey bees. Anyway in Nepal they get gigantic, like very small birds, only really slow and noisy while flying. They are so big and heavy they can’t fly with their bodies parallel to the ground; their backside hangs down about what seems like 60 degrees to horizontal as they wallow along, seemingly ready to fall out of the air. Kids used to capture them and put a string around their bodies and have a flying toy as the bee droned along in slow circles attached to the string.
Anyway as I was walking along, my head turned about 90 degrees to the side looking at the Nepalis in the field as they looked at me, walking some ways like this on a wide level easy trail, I turned my head forward again to see where I was going and was startled by this huge bumble bee about 3ft in front of me at eye level and coming right at my face. I instinctively lurched backwards to avoid it, my back arching, arms flying outwards etc and became overbalanced backwards due to my backpack. Then began what seemed like (in my mind a slow motion, time expanded) long futile effort to regain my balance. Arms and legs flailing, trying to get my feet under me, I continued lurching uncontrollably backwards on the very edge of falling over but trying to recover before the inevitable. But I was going faster and faster backwards and leaning further and further. This went on for some time until I finally lost it completely and crashed to the ground at a high rate of speed ass over tea kettle…bamboo trekking pole flying, arms and legs akimbo, then finally feet flying up in the air and probably a cloud of dust, I don’t remember.
More embarrassed than hurt I got up, got myself together and noticed the Nepalis all laughing hysterically. I thought they must have been at first rather stunned by the whole spectacle before breaking out in laughter. This was of course because as far away as they were I am sure they couldn’t see the bee and had only noticed this weird westerner (under the best of conditions) walking along peacefully then suddenly and for no apparent reason lurch back, spasmodically running backwards and finally crash to the ground. And my trekking pole did not help me."
14th December 2015, 05:36 PM
Re: A Trekking Pole (kind of) Short Story ref the 'Buying equipment' thread
Well I liked the story.
Why would anyone argue over walking sticks...
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