An exciting tale of soup and woodland peril from the Funny Old World column in the latest issue of Private Eye:
“It all started because the soup was too cold,” sixty-nine-year-old Yuri Ticiuc told reporters from his hospital bed in the remote Russian republic of Altai, “and I complained about it to my wife. The complaint turned into a row about her lousy cooking, and I got so angry with her that I stormed out of the house, and out into the woods. I walked and walked for hours through the dense woodlands, until I gradually calmed down, and when I did, the truth started to dawn on me. I was in the middle of the forest in the middle of winter, I didn’t have any idea where I was, and I couldn’t find my way back home.”
Ticiuc was speaking after being lost in frozen forest for more than a month. “I thought I was going to die. The temperatures were sub-zero, and I was getting really weak by the end. I survived by eating berries and leaves, and grain from a haystack, until I became too weak to move. Then one day I heard voices and saw some farm workers nearby. I called them and they managed to get me to hospital. The doctors tell me I’m lucky to be alive, but they may have to amputate my legs. They’re damaged from frostbite, and it may not be possible to save them.
“No matter what happens in future, that’s the last time I ever criticise my wife’s cooking. Her soup may be cold and tasteless, but anything is better than rotten hay.”