This week, I got an email from comedy fan Samantha Hulme. She works with horses in Lancashire.
“I have got a two week job in Chattanooga,” she told me, “and, when I finish there, I am going to have a road trip for ten days.
“I am going to go to Nashville, Tuscon, Memphis and New Orleans. I am going to have a total and utter music fest…”
I suggested she might want to share her experiences for this blog.
On her arrival, she sent me a photo of the luggage belt at Chattanooga Airport.
Yesterday, I got a message saying that, on her first day in Chattanooga, she had been in a cryogenic chamber.
She told me:
It was approximately minus 264 degrees in that chamber. Shall I repeat that? Minus 264 degrees.
At that temperature, there is no moisture in the air, so it does not penetrate the skin.
The correct clothing for this is not a huge North Face jacket or salopettes. It is sports wear: shorts, sports bra, special woollen socks and slippers and special mittens plus a nose mask and wool wraparound hat.
I felt slightly concerned when my very lovely teacher uttered the words: Don’t forget to breathe.
The first chamber is the holding chamber to prepare you for the temperatures in the second chamber. This was not in any way, shape of form a warm-up.
The thought Holy crap! did go through my mind as I entered the first chamber… then I am an ex-postal worker. I can do this!
When I hit the second chamber, my trachea appeared to close.
I went from repeatedly saying in my head Breathe!… to thinking This is the weirdest cold feeling I have ever experienced… to laughter.
After I leapt out, I felt energised.
It was terror and fun mixed together
Exactly how this fits into the concept of “a total and utter music fest” for a comedy fan, I do not yet know. But further missives will, with luck, follow.
The last message I received from Samantha said: “Off to see a comedian now.”
I know no more than you, dear reader.