他預計不到的事 – 上集 / 流行萬里
老流也非淨曉批評搞手的刁筆，感謝今天的主角 Keith Noyes， 一個長居香港的洋人， 資深越野賽搞手，King of the Hills (注1) 創辦人，唔識佢既好跑極都有限！
去年12月首辦“The North Face 100” 香港站越野賽事後，擔當Race Director的Keith，與我分享了活動進行期間發生的幾件事。
Expect the unexpected on the race day
~05.45 and I’m driving to the race start with the music blaring. I figure this is my last chance to relax on this day, the first racing of The North Face 100 – Hong Kong. Suddenly my mobile phone rings. In Mandarin, “Can you tell me how to get to the start line?" Turn down radio and explain in Mandarin. Pause. “Our taxi drive doesn’t understand, can you speak with him directly." In my bad Cantonese, “when you reach Tai Mei Tuk head for the dam." Click.
普通話打去問路，其實唔識路打去問唔奇呀，但又點解打到俾Race Director？又點解參賽者覺得一個洋人聽得明普通話？同時又懂得用廣東話跟的士大佬溝通？(注2) 我第一次睇完呢段都有啲搲頭，再睇埋下面就明。
~05.55 and I’ve turned the music back up and am enjoying the drive again when my phone starts ringing. Another voice in Mandarin, “Our taxi driver can’t find the start line." I reply, “You’re using an emergency phone number to call me before 6 AM when we don’t open the start area until 6:45. Is this really an emergency?" Slightly embarrassed reply, “No, but we still can’t find the start." I reply, “there’s a detailed map of the start area in your race kit." “There is? Didn’t see it." “It’s the sheet next to the emergency number sheet which you obviously have." “Sorry, we left it at the hotel. Can you tell our taxi driver which way to go."
~10.00 a call from a racer, “I think I’m lost." “Where are you?" “I see a sign post that says Wong Leng?" “How on earth did you get there?" “I turned left up hill at the first intersection." “Why would you do that? There were no marks in that direction?" “Yes, there were. Every time I looked behind me I could see course markings." “Those were pointing in the other direction. You’ve just done the last 5 km of the course in the wrong direction." “Oh, how can I get back on course?" “You can’t, you won’t be able to make the CP 2 cut off and the sweepers have already gone through, though you should retrace your steps to return to the start."
~20.00 a call from deputy race director Martin, “Okay, I’ve put up so many flashing lights on the Wilson Trail Section through Taipo that it’s lit up like 5th Avenue." 21.00 a call from a racer, “Keith, I’ve gotten lost trying to follow the Wilson Trail section through Taipo. I couldn’t see any course markings. You need to send someone to mark this section."
~21.30 call from the marshals at checkpoint 6 on Lam Kam Road. “We’re out of trash bags and need you to send more or we’ll never be able to clean up this checkpoint." “There was an entire roll of garbage bags in your supplies, surely you couldn’t have used them all?" “All the racers have taken the garbage bags to make rain jackets so there are none left. Stores are closed so could you send some please."
篇幅有點長， 暫時寫到呢處， 數天內延續下集！
注1： KOTH, King of The Hill 山野之王，每年度4場賽事，以難度見稱，真正的王者之戰! http://bit.ly/1nRBCKC
注 2 : Keith Noyes 80年代曾在北京攻讀，後來去了台灣工作一段時間，廣東話亦可應對，好一 個「倆文三語」鬼佬！
注 3 : 越野比賽中，主辦單位一般會在檢查站關閉時搵人再沿該段賽道走一次，確保參賽者無意外，掃尾隊員很多時侯亦負責移除賽道上的指路牌，並收集參加者遺下的垃圾。