A vicarious summer

It’s been an oddly choppy summer. Plans for lots of walking in the Whites have been squeezed out by sometimes-unexpected travels and travails. I still hope for some good days out in early September and on through the fall (which is the best time, anyway), but in the meantime, I’ve been compensating by reading Ron Bloomquist’s blog, (and, of course many others), listening to Bob’s TGO Challenge podcasts, and wandering through the dangerous world of equipment catalogues.

While I was in England, I took delivery of a pair of Pacer Poles from Heather and Alan, and a Travel Tap from Bob and Rose (Congrats on the Triathlon, Rose!). I think the Tap will be handy in many applications, though I am committed to my Platys, given what seems to be my new old-age proclivity to get dehydrated surprisingly quickly.

The poles are something else again. I’ve never used sticks regularly, one of the pair I did put in play broke fairly spectacularly on the Tour du Mont Blanc, and I’ve just never been sold on the whole idea. But many, many walkers I respect keep recommending that I give them a serious try. And the leader of my potential New Zealand trip recommends them on his kit list. So I’ve shrugged (that little French one-shoulder thing—I’m reading Alan Furst again) and bought the Pacers, which so many of the same people have raved about, and I will give them a serious go. That will be me, slightly embarrassed, click-clacking with my Pacers through the cemetery and along Main Street—pausing periodically to squeeze a dramatic mouthful of absolutely pure water into my mouth from the Tap. The combination should get me home safe.

More on that perilous catalogue perusing TK.


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