Monday, 18 May 2015

A little walk in the park

After four months of pretty hit and miss walk training the big day of the 2015 London Moonwalk finally arrived. Yes, four months of pain, sweat and enduring the winging of my tag along children climaxed with one big night of fun!
The excitement had been brewing all week and the realisation of the fact that I would have to walk a very long and enduring 26.2 miles after a regular jam packed day of activity. You see, you train for the walking but you don't train to do it when you are ready for bed at a time when you are most exhausted.
I had planned to grab a quick hour long power nap between one and two on Saturday lunchtime, but like a child with a new toy, the excitement was so immense that there was no way that was going to happen!

At 7pm after dropping the children with a very good friend, my lovely friend Kat and I took the train into London and had to walk a good two miles to join the long queue into Moonwalk City. I didn't really want to waste any energy but part from hailing a cab, walking was really the only option; besides we thought of it as a warm up!

Kat had even remembered to polish her halo!

The queue was long but pretty well organised, see the large pink 'nipple tent' in the distance.



Once in the tent the smell of food wafted under our noses. The Moonwalk crew have thought things through really well and have a tasty hot carb filled meal waiting for you when you arrive. On this occasion it was actually only a little over an hour between eating and walking. Probably not ideal but it didn't take long for things to work their way through and the energy to be absorbed and transferred.

Waiting and preparing to go.....

On the start line.

The initial start was somewhat of a bundle. Everyone was desperate to get out there and do what we had turned out to do. We found ourselves walking half a minute faster than we had trained, that wasn't going to be sustainable......we pushed ourselves to get into a steady pace and pretty much managed to keep it up.

I was rather thinking of the whole event as one large nighttime sightseeing walking tour and it was just that. I imagined sharing some wonderful photos of the glorious sights with you but that was not to be. I was totally focused on walking.....I was on a mission. I took two photos near to the's one!!

I gave up after that.......

Looking back everything is a blur....I passed amazing historic sights without even realising it......
We were so far ahead this year that even the many volunteers out helping hadn't woken up to their duties at the point we passed, they were there and some of them cheered us on but many just blended in.
There were many moments when it didn't feel like we were doing a marathon walk at all. Walking out in front meant that you left the atmosphere behind - most bazaar.

Our first mission was to reach Tower Bridge before it raised. Apparently it has only raised once before in the 19 year history of Moonwalks and Saturday night it was to raise twice! Luckily we made it. The wait even though it would have been brief, would have meant we would have lost time and cooled down. Not good.
The 18 mile mark is the hardest; although this time round it didn't feel too bad. From previous experience this is the time to lessen pain with the aid of pain killers. They help the inflammation caused by the exertion but also mask a little of the pain and help to give you a second wind. That second wind never ceases to amaze's always rather funny! At the moment that most are flagging, you suddenly perk up and step into overdrive and's like a scene from Turbo!
Being out in front meant we didn't have to contend with masses of walkers that were slower than us. That was until the 22 mile mark where the Half Moon walkers joined us to finish the stroll. They silenced as we passed them, (I sense in awe of the fact that we had walked twice the distance they had in the same time), we passed on encouraging comments in our stride :-)

We cruised in along the home straight and across the finishing line in 6 hours and 6 minutes, knocking 4 minutes off my personal best :-) and we finished in the top 40 :-) :-)  :-)
That's determination for you.............No, not the competitive streak at all!!!!

So 4.36 am....what are we to do in London at that time of night??


A huge thank you to all of those who sponsored me and offered kind words of support and encouragement :-)

Day after: Sore bottom and thighs rather tight whilst tackling stairs but feet feeling jolly fine and not a blister in sight :-)!

All just a walk in the park....

Friday, 1 May 2015

The Boy


It has a funny sort of ring to it that word!

I was looking at my Small Boy today and marvelling at the wonder of him. One average seven year old boy, one bundle of mischief wrapped in a covering of innocence.

Everyday I am confronted with new challenges with regards to my boy. But his charm and cheeky nature shine through and make the challenges....memorable, bearable. Mostly!

Sticks......they seem to be all over the house

Today was just an average sort of day in the life of one Small Boy, another everyday adventure waiting to uncurl. 

The morning started with the usual session of 'aggravation of sisters', that happens most mornings and can last anything from one little teeny incident to the entire day. During this period the house is filled with the sound of screeching and complaining.....'Muuuum'.....grrrrr!

Lunch presented the usual.....'Muuuum, Fenton has tipped half the bottle of ketchup on his plate!' Hmmmm......

An after lunch walk along the canal was an enjoyable experience. The Boy is totally in his comfort zone when in the big wide world surrounded by nature. He shares a love of wildlife with the rest of us and a fascination of fishing like his father. He always insists on creeping up on unsuspecting fishermen and insisting on finding out the state of the catch for the day. 
The ducks sat happily on the bank sunning themselves in the afternoon sunshine, but only for a short while. We watched sympathetically as the poor birds jumped in fear of their lives, plunging into the chilled water below and shaking their tails in a state of discontent at the sudden awakening.
The boy cannot help himself!

Stopping off at the local shop on the way home. The Boy very happily trundled off by himself to buy bread and sugar whilst we waited in the car. He isn't phased by the need for independence, and is more than capable of locating the goods and going through the motions of paying for the items as needed. I wonder in hindsight whether he lay down on the shop floor and looked under the shelving units. He's always on lookout for money and frequently finds quite a bit. (Much to my embarrassment).

Racking up at a friends house on the way home for a brief visit, The Boy, fiddles and searches out all the gadgety things. 'Can I have a look in your camper van?, can I take this truck home, where's the loo'.....we set off for home with a number of large batteries for his electric scooter.........the list goes on!


Old fuse board, partially dismantled and abandoned.....

Attempts at making a Go-Cart

Upon arriving home, The Boy happily tinkered with his new/second hand scooter, changing the batteries and forming a pile of those that were flat. I stood back and looked at my front garden; which increasingly seems to be resembling a 'scrap yard'. Items outgrown and further bits of treasure/junk discarded randomly.
'Stig of the dump' sprung to mind. He'd like that story, would he relate more to Stig or Barney?

A leisurely walk this evening brought out further excitement in the the life of the Boy. A family stroll down to the lake, (which is just five minutes from our house). A month or so back, the excitement centred around the mating of the toads. Concern was expressed for the females who often had up to ten males squashing them at one time. Of course the Boy rescued several back then from suffocation and doom. Tonight the excitement was more focused towards the large number of tadpoles swimming around and then.......a dead fish. 'Noooooo, Noooooo.......Yes', the fish (identified as a perch) was hooked out and wrapped up in his coat ready for the journey home. I expressed my disgust and offence being vegetarian at the nasty nature of this act. 'You must understand that I do not eat meat and it is important for me to learn about these things. Besides, I want to dissect it and then watch it decompose so that I can add the bones to my collection!' Ewwww yuck!!!

Arrrr (sigh.......)