The day before the challenge, on Day 7, I found a small tomato in tree mail. It was about the size of a handball. A gift from the Survivor gods. I cooked it with rice for my evening meal. It is the only thing to break up the monotony of rice, beans and fruit since this thing started. Whoa. A dash of flavor! What a concept!
On Saturday, Day 8, I faced down my first immunity challenge. Toting my torch, tribal flag, and sporting my buff, I departed camp for the appointed place at the appointed time. The living room. Whew. What a hike.
I was feeling no small amount of trepidation due to the humiliating drubbing I’d suffered at the previous reward challenge which was still very much fresh in my mind. Also, I had yet to find the hidden immunity idol so I was feeling at risk. Even in spite of being provided with a very illuminating clue: “It’s somewhere on Earth.” Yeah, that’s helpful. At least it saves me the bother of searching Uranus.
According to the official rules of Survivor: Abyss Island if I won the immunity challenge I’d take home the immunity idol and be safe for another week. If I lost I’d go immediately to tribal council where I’d be bullied and badgered by the host prior to something known as “sentencing.” Knowing my wife that had a very ominous ring to it.
I arrived at the challenge to find my
Probst wife standing next a chair covered in a confusing web of rope. Dammit, she is a student of the game.
My wife proceed to explain the rules.
A ring was located at the bottom of the chair’s front left leg. My task was to maneuver the ring to the leg farthest away at the rear right. The rules prohibited anything sneaky like removing the rope from the chair.
The time allotted for the challenge? One minute and 55 seconds.
Before starting the challenge my wife unveiled the immunity idol: A mother goddess figurine adorned with jewelry. Dang. She thinks of everything.
She gave me a moment to strategize, asked if I was ready, and then the challenge was on.
I pounced on the ring and moved it along the rope. It was quickly apparent that this task was harder than it looked. Doing it by touch was slow going but the only other alternative was to get up and try to move around and that just sounded exhausting.
The ring got hung up a couple of times, costing me precious seconds, and my cats decided to get in on the fun. They were entranced by what was going on.
Meanwhile my wife kept at me with the Probst-chatter trying to mess with my head.
Finally I got the ring down that last leg and yelled “Done!” as it hit the end. My wife looked at her clock and announced the results.
I had won! And with 10 seconds to spare. Ah, the sweet stench of success! Who knows? Maybe I can get used to it. I high-pawed the cats and decided to make them honorary members of ZeitGuru tribe. Maybe I’ll see them again soon as my “loved ones” during the family visit.
Slowly I came down from that winner’s high (is that what this is?) and hoisted my prize. There would be no dreaded “sentencing” this week. On the other hand, there are currently no prospects for food, either. The next reward challenge isn’t until Wednesday. Until then it is more of the same: rice, beans, and banana. Ugh.
I’ll be praying to the Survivor gods for something modest like a cheeseburger, fries and coke. But at this point I’ll be excited enough, I guess, even if it is only a shaker of salt.
Meanwhile, as I write this recap it is Day 9. Only 30 more days to go. And according to my measurements and calculations, I’ve lost over four percent of my total body weight. Help me, I’m melting.