Thomas tries… the rock wall

Will Thomas’ monkey instincts prevail? Find out in this issue’s Thomas Tries!

Thomas was disgusted at the amount of gum stuck on the campus walls. Courtesy Angie Theilmann

Thomas was disgusted at the amount of gum stuck on the campus walls. Courtesy Angie Theilmann

In typically boneheaded fashion, I’d forgotten to bring shorts to school. To make matters worse, there were a couple of inches of snow on the ground, so when I biked to school my jeans had gotten soaked. Nonetheless, while jeans stuck to my legs, I stuck to my mission. That mission, was to fearlessly try out BCIT’s climbing wall.

When the woman working at the counter told me to pay $2.24 for a climbing session, I thought, “That’s very cheap for a climbing wall.” Then I reminded myself that this was my first time climbing, and I had no idea how much it usually costs to climb a wall.

The woman, who turned out to be named Maria, got me some shoes and they were very small, but she insisted they were supposed to be that way for some reason.

[pullquote]Before we knew it we were zooming all over that wall like clumsy spiders.[/pullquote]I filled out some forms so I couldn’t blame BCIT if I did something stupid. Maria explained that we were only allowed to climb as high as a yellow line that was painted mid-way up the climbing wall, since this time around we wouldn’t be using harnesses. That was fine by me since the line seemed pretty high.

As my friend Angie and I got ready to scale a BCIT wall, something we’d never done, I became a bit jealous that she was wearing shorts. I hoped my range of motion wouldn’t suffer too much.

Maria told me about colour-coded routes that you can take up the wall that range in difficulty. Disregarding this information I decided to blaze my own train, and began climbing all over the place like a madman. Angie started climbing too, and before we knew it we were zooming all over that wall like clumsy spiders. Pretty soon I started getting really tired, and I slowed my pace.
Then, a guy with a muscle shirt who was sitting in the chair watching got up and approached the wall, and showed us how he could climb all the way to the top without using his legs, just his arms! I looked at my pathetic noodle arms in disgust.

Maria, Angie, and Muscle Man challenged me to climb using only my arms and the attempt was so feeble that its publication would be a crime.

So after about 40 minutes, I was sweaty, sore, and wearing damp jeans. I guess the expression is something about hitting a wall. I asked Maria and Muscle Man some questions while Angie was trying to figure out how the heck to get back down to Earth.

From what I have gathered, most people go on Wednesdays, since one can purchase a pass that makes climbing free on that day. They said generally, the climbing wall isn’t exactly a hotspot. I thought it was a shame everyone else at BCIT wasn’t taking advantage of this wall, particularly since I felt more exhausted than I had in a while.

And so, stretched out, tired and content after our climbing experience, Angie and I strode from the climbing wall, thinking of other obscure BCIT activities to participate in that might or might not involve monkey business.

“There’s a sauna,” she said, “and those $10 massages! There’s also a super good chicken sandwich that you have to try!”

“All of those sound good to me,” I said, “I’d like to try ‘em all.”

Pick up the next issue of The Link to find out what Thomas tries next![hr]

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