Volcano by Tom

There’s nothing wrong with a holiday excursion, after a few days of chilling out, it’s nice to do something different, soak up some sights and sounds etc. It’s a sort of cultural mini detox for the copious amounts of drink and food you’ve consumed so far. My partner and I don’t holiday often, so when we do, we are desperate to only relax and to be as comfortable as possible. We were so adamant on this intent, that when we booked our last package holiday, we made a pact – no excursions.

Day one of our holiday, a rep asks if were interested in doing anything. I had already pre-rehearsed my excellent excuses for why we wouldn’t be indulging in their trip-based frivolities. 10 minutes later – excursion booked. FFS.

Fully committed, we now just had a few days of holidaying whilst we awaited our sentence. I looked on the bright side. We were going to be visiting a Volcano! I then saw the dark side – the reception at the hotel had informed us that they were experiencing a ‘calima’ and the temperature would be around 45 (well over 100 in old money). + Volcano heat.

We board the bus and it’s an immediate realisation we have fucked up. The bus aircon is akin to the last breath of a dying man felt from a neighbouring town. The musty smell agrees with this analogy. I’m now melting, but etiquette dictates that I cannot take my top off.  I hold an odd pose. To some it might look like I’m suffering from a stroke. But I’ll hold any position that stops the feeling of sweat dripping down the back of my neck. This is all made worse by the relatively smug comfort my girlfriend seems to be enjoying. As someone who runs cold, she’s enjoying the karma from all the times I told her we shouldn’t put the heating on at home.

I’m starting to panic. I’m now really hot. I’m looking forward to getting to the destination, being delirious I’d forgotten what that was. We arrive, ah yes, the only thing on the planet hotter than that bus – a sodding volcano.

I spot something that gives me hope; geysers of flowing water from the ground. Shooting up and showering everyone. This is cruelty as instead of cooling rain, it’s scolding hot water. People are giggling. I hate this planet.

Somehow, I get through it and we board the bus back. But not until we stop at a vineyard. Yes, a vineyard at a volcano. I don’t need to go in to depth here: the wine was shit. But wait, a gift shop! Aircon! I brush the eager tourists aside and locate a glorious air conditioning unit towards the back of the shop. Nirvana. I frequent it several times as I keep forgetting how hot it is outside. Each time I visit I audibly let out a sigh of relief and open my body up – accepting the cooling flow of the Hitachi Easyflow X1000. However, by my fourth visit I was starting to get funny looks. “Fuck em’ they are just jealous of my new found comfort” I thought as I repeated my opening up and sighing process. The stares now escalate to worried murmurs. I step back and gauge my surroundings. The position of the air-conditioning unit was unfortunate. I thought I’d been standing at a shrine worshiping the gods of air conditioning. It turned out I was actually worshiping at a shrine of phallic themed souvenirs. As I said before, I hate this planet.