Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Wow, so much has happened

The last few weeks have certainly been busy. First our anniversary, then Olivia's birthday, and now we're back from our vacation last week - 4 days and 3 nights camping at Mt. Rainier (it rained most of the time), and 4 days and 3 nights in Wenatchee (it was sunny and in the 90s most of the time).

A couple highlights, for those who care about the life of Dan:

- While camping at Mt. Rainier, I took the girls over for an evening ranger talk. The ranger was talking about using all five senses to experience nature. Just as she told the kids to be silent and listen, a fox slunk through the amphitheater, climbed up on Cougar Rock, pooped (in full view of the enthralled kids) and wandered away. It was a nature moment par excellence.

- And Wenatchee was simply fun. We strolled through the enchanting Ohme Gardens, visited the Rocky Reach Dam and watched salmon swim the fish ladder, took the tour of Liberty Orchards in Cashmere (home of Aplets and Cotlets candy. . .free samples. . .mmmm). On Sunday we spent the day in Leavenworth, Washington's Bavarian Village high in the Cascade Mountains. We ate at a waffle house, hiked along the river, watched the kids romp around on a play structure, then wandered back through town.

- Which requires a bullet point of its own. About 8 years ago, we visited Leavenworth for the Christmas Lighting Extravaganza, along with an old high school friend and his (then) girlfriend (now wife). We entered a snack shop and saw one of those Hot Pepper displays. I made the mistake of sampling the Hot Sauce from Hell. One bite and the world spun out of control. I couldn't breath. I couldn't think. I ran out into the snow looking for relief, but even that didn't help. It's still a terrible memory.

So, we visited the same shop last Sunday. I thought "I've grown my palate since then. I've eaten a lot more spicy Mexican food. I've learned to enjoy Wasabi. I can handle it this time." I stuck a dollop of the Hot Sauce from Hell on my pretzel and took a bite. And my world came to an end. I couldn't breath. I couldn't think. The room started to spin. My eyes were watering. My throat was swelling. And all I could think was "pain." It came in waves - just when you thought "it's almost over now" it only got worse. I grabbed the girls and we ran out looking for a water fountain (they were oblivious to the fact that I was dying). Three minutes later we found the fountain, only to discover it was broken. It was like some sort of psychological torture. For 20 minutes it felt like I had a donut of flame shoved into the back of my throat. I couldn't talk, except to say "I'm in pain."

We made an agreement. If one of us ever even thinks about going back into that store, the other is supposed to step on their toe. Hard. Just to remind us of the pain. I still get agitated, just thinking about it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I ate a hot pepper like that once. I thought I was going to die. My throat closed up, my eyes watered so badly I couldn't see (or maybe I was just crying?), I scared all my co-workers, and I had no feeling in my tongue for days. Never again! (Susan)