Saturday, 18 August 2007

Some Like It Hot

I have been reading Gayle's LEJOG Blog this afternoon.

By dint of sheer low cunning and stealth, Gayle & Mick take V&J, previously a couple of great character and social standing, out to dinner. She plies them with 'buckets' of wine and then drags them back home to talk about the supposed benefits and pleasures of a backpacking trip.

In the process they unload the contents of their very lightweight backpacks and explain how it all works, when out backpacking and wild camping. It appears that at the time, V&J were not particularly impressed, but the damage had been done.

A few days later V&J were enquiring about the sort of gear they would need to go B&B trekking...

This made me chuckle as back in 1998 Lynnie & I were holidaying with the gourmandising Lord & Lady Elpus in the South of France. It was a particularly pleasant villa with a pool and we were living the high life for two weeks.

The only trouble with the South of France is that it does get a bit hot and there is only so much of swimming in a pool that a chap can take before his skin gets so wrinkly that it turns to mush. Not wishing to be anti-social I stayed with L&L Elpus and Lynnie at the side of the pool, but covered from head to toe in towels and Tilley hats. One hand would periodically slip from beneath cover to refill the rapidly emptying glass of chilled white Rully.

Lord Elpus got a fit of Horse's Burial and asked 'Al, Just what sort of holiday do you enjoy?'

Well lubricated with laughing juice by this point in the day, I think I rambled on interminably until late at night extolling the wonders and magnificence of the Great Outdoors and the pedestrian perambulations therein until the stars shone like diamonds above us in the deep blue black of the firmanent.

I do remember Lynnie giggling uncontrollably at the thought of Lord & Lady Elpus trekking through Scottish wilderness and in a weakened moment suggesting that if I managed to persuade this couple of Francophile Bon Viveurs to strap a rucksack on their backs then she would be up for it herself!

Two months later, back in Blighty on a cold October weekend, I received a phone call from Lord E himself.

'Al. about this walking thing...'

Abandon all hope, V&J.


  1. Alan
    great piece, it's always interesting to hear how people got into this lark.

  2. Oooh, that made me chortle. I have duly sent a link to (the now well kitted out) V&J!


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