Thursday, October 06, 2005

Kathmandu to Gonda! Pt.7 - Will it float?

A ride through the Nepali Terrai into India
KTM to Nepalgung (Indian border) – 508 km
KTM to Gonda (India) – 636 km

The ride:
Kathmandu to Mugling Bazaar – 110 km
Mugling Bazaar to Narayanghat – 34 km

The story so far:
Mr Felix continues his search for the Lost Divine Spark (LDS). After a ride down through the mountains and the rain out of Kathmandu, he’s now stuck in Narayanghat with a bad flu and a state of mind that’s approaching terror. He’s recently been down to the internet café and has been checking out Dante’s Inferno on the web, in one last-gasp effort to confront his spiritual condition head on.

Part 7: Will it float?

I feel a lot better after reading Dante’s Inferno, and back at the hotel I make a resolution: The dope has to go!

There’s no point working out where you are and then getting stoned off your gourd. It’d be like shooting yourself in the foot, which is one way to exit the war zone, but I’m a cyclist and don’t like holes in my feet.

I will go down with this ship,
And I won’t put my hands up and surrender.
There will be no white flag above my door,
I’m in love and always will be.


While I stand over the bowl and watch the plastic bag gurgle down the hole, I offer it up as a votive sacrifice just to make it official and maybe score a few heavenly frequent flyer points.

Scene in heaven: St. Matthew, the tax collector, and assistant, in charge of assessing votive offerings.

Assistant: We’ve got another incoming from that Mr Felix, Matt!
Matthew: Oh, gawd! What is it this time?
Assistant: It looks like about 38 grams of prime quality Nepalese Brown, dripping with water or something...
Matthew: Kee-riste, this guy kills me! What was it last time? A complete set of logged, ordered and numbered URLs on ‘Hot Babes on Bikes with Vegetables!’. All right, sigh… let’s dunk it!

(The 'dunk' or Votive Sacrifices Test (VST) is very similar to David Letterman’s TV segment ‘Will it Float?’ where Dave’s lovely assistants drop objects into a tank of water - a bicycle, for example, to see whether it floats or not. It’s gripping stuff!)

Matthew’s assistant drops the Nepalese Brown into the large font of holy water.

Assistant: No, Matt, it’s gone to the bottom! Feet of clay, mate. No points for Mr Felix today!
Matthew: Yeah, I thought so…
Assistant: Wo! Hang on! The placcy bag’s split and the hash is leaking out all over the place! Oi vay! We’re gonna have to drain the water and clean the font!
Matthew (coldly): 200 penalty points! What’s his score now?
Assistant (checking the book): Let me see, that’s, ah…205 minus 200… that gives him a grand total of 5 points.
Matthew: What’s his I.S.?

(I.S. stands for Inferno Status, and dictates where and for long you’re going to stay in Hell after you die.)

Assistant: At the moment he’s looking at a life sentence in Circle 2. That’d be 25 years, maybe out in 10, 15 with good behaviour. Heh, heh! Fat chance of that, eh, Matt?
Matthew: What’s he need to beat the rap?
Assistant: Rough figures? About 8 billion points.
Matthew: Sheezus! Some people are beyond help…
Assistant: Hang on, Matt, we got another incoming from a…Miss Julia Roberts!
Matthew (brightening): Ah, Julia! What is it this time?
Assistant: A 1962 Volkswagen Beetle in mint condition with a pink bow and a 'Save the Whales!' sticker on the back window, also original.
Matthew: What colour is it?
Assistant: Kind of a nice cherry red…
Matthew: It’ll float! Give her a billion points, and ah, can we pull a few strings and arrange another Academy Award for her? I loved that movie she did with that Hugh fellow, what's his name?
Assistant: Hugh Grant. Another bad egg, Matt. We've got him marked down for the cell right next to Mr Felix's. Another long-term stayer. Anyway, I'll see what I can do about the Academy Award. Shouldn’t be a problem.
Matthew: Great, let’s do lunch, I’m famished!

Back on earth I lie down on my bed and look at the ceiling.

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