Friday 4 March 2011
The Blessings of Good Thick Socks
Presently I came to a place where it went out, but appeared again on the other side of a clump of underbush fairly distinctly. I made a short cut for it and the next news was I was in a heap, on a lot of spikes, some fifteen feet or so below ground level, at the bottom of a bag-shaped game pit. It is at these times you realise the blessing of a good thick skirt. Had I paid heed to the advice of many people in England, who ought to have known better, and did not do it themselves, and adopted masculine garments, I should have been spiked to the bone, and done for. Whereas, save for a good many bruises, here I was with the fulness of my skirt tucked under me, sitting on nine ebony spikes some twelve inches long, in comparative comfort, howling lustily to be hauled out.
The Blessings of a Good Thick Skirt have been mentioned before on these pages; Mary Kingsley recommended them for intrepid Lady Travellers exploring Darkest Africa. I myself would like to recommend a pair of good thick socks, specifically when flying long-haul.
Planes can be cold; they make your feel swell; the toilets are often not as pristine as they might be. So I get into my seat and put on my thick socks: warm, cozy, comforting. For preference, I use the socks the airline provides (most still do on long flights) to pull over my own socks like slippers to create a barrier between me and any nasties on the floor of the plane.
To read more from Mary Kingsley's Travels in West Africa see Project Gutenberg.