Voice of Experience (March)

The Cure: Catch the hot spot before it’s too late.
Heavy all-leather waffle stompers may have gone the way of the dodo bird, but blisters, alas, have not.
Friction, pressure, poor fit, and wet socks still combine to create irritating hot spots. To protect the skin
on your heels and toes, follow these tips.
1. Good advice is worth repeating: The best way to prevent blisters is to wear boots that fit-
with room to move your toes and without heel slippage.
2. Wear wool or synthetic socks (read: Not Cotton) that wick away moisture. Or try a silk or polypro
liner under a hiking sock so that friction occurs between socks layers instead of against your skin.
3. Trade down to lighter boots. Many of today’s high-tech low-tops have enough sole support to handle
40-pound loads, but flexible uppers that are gentler on your feet.
4. That’s said, don’t skip the break-in. It’s still wise to wear new boots around the house and on day
hikes before a multiday trip.
5. Run interference on hot spots. As soon as you feel a burning sensation, cover the spot with moleskin
or duct tape.
1. Pop a blister before it breaks inside your sweaty, dirty sock. Clean the area, then pierce the roof of
the blister with a sterile needle and massage out the fluid. Keep the roof intact to protect the skin
2. Cut a hole in a piece of moleskin or form just larger than the blister. Apply antibiotic ointment, then
tincture of benzoin on the clean, dry skin around the blister; the common antiseptic boosts the
stickiness of tape and bandages. Wait 15 seconds, then affix the moleskin donut so the hole creates a
pressure-free pocket around the sore. Apply a second layer as needed to keep direct pressure off the
blister. Seal with a “lid” of moleskin, and cover the entire patch with duct or athletic tape.
3. Keep a bandage in place for up to 3 days, then wash and retape. If the area is red, swollen, or leaking
pus, it’s infected. Keep it dressed; if the infection persists for more than a few days, see a doctor.
Recipe of the month (Vegetarian Dish)
Couscous with Chickpeas, Dried Fruit, and Cilantro – (Serves 4)
1/2 c. water
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1 c. orange juice
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. whole wheat couscous (or substitute with regular couscous)
1/2 c. water

T-26 Newsletter
March, 2024

2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced
1 medium green bell pepper, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 tsp. curry powder
1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 c. dried apricots, sliced
1/2 c. dried sweetened cranberries
3 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
1. Combine water, allspice, 1/2 cup of the orange juice, 1 cup water, and 1/4 teaspoon of the
salt in saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stir in couscous, cover, remove
from heat, and let stand 5 minutes. Fluff with fork.
2. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, pepper, garlic, and curry
powder. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add
chickpeas, apricots, and cranberries. Cook stirring occasionally, 2 minutes.
3. Pour in remaining 1/2 cup orange juice and cook, stirring often. Remove from heat and stir
in cilantro and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt.
Serve over couscous.

By, Mr. Soga

Don’t Stop Here

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