Angle to Key West: Hands vs. Feet (2/13)


South of Belleair Causeway – February 13, 2013

“Not a single blister,” my hands said. “And look at you, getting sanded down like a rough piece of wood.”

My feet didn’t say anything. Or maybe they did. I couldn’t hear them over the machine grinding down their outside heel as they hung over the edge of a chair in a doctor’s office.

“Pathetic,” my hands said.

It sounds harsh, but my feet started it. On the Appalachian Trail they got blisters, they ached, they had all the glory of 2,174.1 miles heaped on them, and they started talking trash.

Add in another 6,000 miles or so and my hands looked on from above with all the jealousy of a younger sibling.

“I could do that,” they said.

“Bullshit you could,” my feet replied.

Then I started to paddle.

I expected blisters on my hands. I expected giant calluses. I expected something. Instead my feet took the brunt of it. They poured blood out in portages, got assaulted by leaches, swelled up like balloons, and built callouses on their heels that cracked open. My hands, an aching finger in each and nothing more.

“This is easy,” they said.

“I hate you,” my feet answered.

And we ended up in a podiatrists office getting our heels sanded down. It was a humbling moment for my feet. The once proud walkers, the size 14 giants reduced to sanding, but they still had a bit of pride left at the end.

“4,000 miles?” they said, “talk to me when you hit 8,000. I wore out five pairs of shoes on the Continental Divide Trail. Five. You are still on your first paddle.”

2 thoughts on “Angle to Key West: Hands vs. Feet (2/13)

  1. For you to go to a doctor for help it MUST have been bad! This isn’t another kind of Yogi-ing, is it?

  2. Hey, Daniel, of the size 14 feet!! Mike also has size 14 feet. And he has a pair of Thorlo socks I got him for Christmas. He wore them once and said “I don’t like these socks, I don’t know why you think they’re so great.” So if you would like them I will try to find a way to get them to your Dad or someone so you can pick them up when you get to Tally. Those Thorlo heel cushions might feel good on those heels of yours!!

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