I found my limit:
I went climbing at The Columns the other day, the bright early-winter sun on the dark gray rock making it twenty degrees warmer than the shade.
I climbed moderates for hours, beautiful 5.8 to 5.10d cracks, the sun on the cold rock making everything sticky and perfect. I felt strong, healthy, injury-free, well-fed and hydrated, and all below me down the hill were the final red and yellow leaves of the Western Maples.
I climbed until my hands were rough and my shoulders felt good and worn. Then I pulled my rope and stuffed it, took off my climbing shoes, ate a little food, drank some water.
But when I picked up my gear bag, a thick yellow substance slung off of the bottom of my coat onto my arm, my hand, my pants, my climbing carabiners, and my keys. It was everywhere. Then I smelled it. This stuff.
At the joint of the rock and the log, where people sit and watch their friends climb, where people put their lead-climbing gear, where kids eat snacks and wait for their parents to finish climbing, someone, someone had defecated, had pooped. Someone had shat a foot-long, six-inch wide lake of brown-crusted, yellow diarrhea.
And now, that diarrhea was all over me. It was everywhere. Gravity and the swinging motion of me putting on my coat had dispersed this yellow liquid-solid all over me and my gear.
All I wanted was a shower. Two showers.
All I wanted was soap. Abrasive dish soap.
All I wanted was to run my clothes washer twice, maybe three times, maybe four.
All I wanted was bleach, harsh chemicals, toxic cleansing sprays, and I did not want to be this dirty ever, ever again.