Saturday, 31 August 2013

186 Miles To Go!

I rolled over in bed last night and my spine broke. OK, not my actual spine, but the spine of my bed went crashing to the floor at 4am and gave me quite a shock. I’d love to say it’s because of all the fun and games that’s taken place in that particular arena…but who am I trying to kid?! Thankfully, I only believe in good omens so am ignoring this one.

So in less than 24 hours I’ll be on my way. Lots of people have been asking me how I feel about it. Well in truth I’ve not had much time to think about it. This week has been utterly horrific, I can’t be bothered to go into why, but it really has been the worst. It might be a good thing, in that I don’t think next week can possibly be as bad!

Front of the shirt
and the back...which probably won't get seen that much!

Now though, it’s all quite real. I’ve done my last bits of shopping (I have no intention of ever visiting Holland & Barrett again) and the good luck texts and calls have been coming in since last night.

I need to thank a few people. Firstly Gareth and Laura; G joins me on day one and Laura on day two, which is a fantastic effort. Laura 2, or more accurately Mrs Ted, has been an incredible help with contacts and will see me along the way, as will Ted himself hopefully. Kiwi and Sugar who have come all the way from Grand Cayman just to join me for lunch; Emily and Chops, who I hope to see on Thursday, and my friend Katie who should be with me on the last section on Friday from Richmond to Putney. Great effort all – I really appreciate your making the effort.

Desperately trying to pack...unsure if the bed will hold
And packed - all I need for the next week. Blimey.
The sponsorship has blown me away. I’m halfway to my target and there’s lots of people who have said they’re still going to sponsor (you know who you are!) – which is amazing. Likewise I’ve been blown away by the people I’ve never met who have been happy to give advice and even offer me their homes to sleep in along the way – turns out the British are not as inhospitable as many people think we are.

I’ve been asked plenty about the route I’m taking – so here it is:

Sunday 1st September: Kemble – Chimney (35 miles)
Monday 2nd September: Chimney – Abingdon (31 miles)
Tuesday 3rd September: Abingdon – Pangbourne (25 miles)
Wednesday 4th September: Pangbourne – Cookham Lock (26 miles)
Thursday 5th September: Cookham Lock – Laleham (24 miles)
Friday 6th September: Laleham – Putney (26 miles)
Saturday 7th September: Putney – Thames Barrier (19 miles)

So – that’s 186 miles in seven days. Looks like I’ll be under canvas every night and I plan to have dinner in Putney on the Friday – most likely at the Queen Adelaide. I’ll have my phone on that night so drop me a line if you fancy joining.

Those who plan to walk with me on Saturday 7th – firstly a big Thank You. It will mean a lot to have people with me that day, because it’s going to be difficult (and I’m aware possibly quite emotional!). The plan is to leave Putney Bridge at 7:15am sharp. I’m afraid I really can’t wait around. Again, I’ll have my phone with me if you need to get in touch but I’d rather not spend all day giving people directions. If all goes according to plan I should be at Tower Bridge by 10:30ish and, depending on whether we take a proper lunch or just push on, I hope to reach the Thames Barrier no later than 3pm.

The Finish Line
At the barrier there is a park with a café if the weather is good 9the forecast is promising, thank the Good Lord!). Sadly the café doesn’t serve booze, and I suspect I’ll be ready for a beer by that stage so anyone who wants to bring some would get huge points! Failing that, there’s a pub very nearby which may be a bit suspect, but it’ll do. Again, the more the merrier.

Sadly I heard that Rob, Annabel and Thea won’t be able to stop in at all along the way, or be there at the finish, which is a real shame but I totally understand it. Annabel is pregnant again and getting pretty big now, while looking after Thea is obviously complicated. I’ll be thinking of you guys a lot this week and hopefully we’ll meet up again pretty soon.

So how am I feeling? Nervous as hell. Think I may have bitten off a little more than I can chew and perhaps made this unnecessarily hard for myself – but at the same time it was always supposed to be a challenge. My life has been drifting a little for the last year or so and I hope this will stir things up again and just help me to think a little clearer about what happens next.

So thanks again for reading, I doubt I’ll be able to update this on the way but I’ll do a wrap up when it’s finished. If you still want to donate then the link is on the right of this page and if you’re on Facebook then keep an eye on my page as I’ll at least try to update that each evening when I’m done. If I have the energy.

It’s gonna be a long week! 
The Park where I hope to be supping a beer in 186 miles time.

1 comment:

  1. Really wish we could be there with you, Cuzzface! Genuinely a bit teary-eyed that we won't be able to walk any of it with you or be there to cheer you over the finish line. Just as well you have so many awesome friends to support you. Thinking of you! V, J, E & E xxxx