My mid August New Forest walk was turning into a nightmare. Not only was I hot, hungry and thirsty, now I was worried about Commando. He’d sounded so down when he called me and knowing he was almost out of water and lost too made it worse. In truth, neither of us were far from civilisation and would be unlikely to die of hunger and thirst but it did go to show how easy it is to get into trouble out in the forest when you’re not properly prepared. Continue reading Cows, or are they Bulls? – first published 18 August 2013
Commando was training for his first marathon. His first Sunday morning run of August was fifteen miles, his longest ever. He ended up, hot but otherwise unscathed from his long, long run. He did say his calves were a little achy so I added peppermint oil to some of my body butter and gave them a massage which he said did the trick. He could have just been trying to make me feel better though. Either way I was very proud of him. The next run was eighteen miles. Continue reading Loneliness of the long distance runner – first published 18 August 2013
On 11 August 2013, Commando decided to do his fifteen mile marathon training run in the New Forest and I went along for moral support and to have a little walk of my own. We set off earlyish. It was raining which was good news for Commando because he likes running in the rain, not so much for me. Still I had my bright pink Moonwalk hat and my windproof, waterproof coat and I figured at least it wouldn’t be muddy and flooded like my last New Forest walk. Continue reading walking through the heather – first published 11 August 2013
While I was keeping a worried eye on the clouds the ponies, who’d been grazing some way off beside Beaulieu Road, had noticed us. Maybe it was the rustling of sandwich bags or the smell of the cold bacon rolls but they decided we were interesting enough to investigate. Very slowly they sauntered towards us. Once or twice I may have mentioned that I find ponies a little scary. As they wandered nonchalantly in our direction, trying to pretend they were just looking for juicier grass I watched them nervously. Continue reading Care For A Walk? Lyndhurst to Totton
This Saturday morning I got a lie in until six thirty, more than an hour after I’d normally be prising myself out of my bed. After such a hectic week it was a bonus and even better because I didn’t have the office ahead of me. The day of the annual Care For A Walk New Forest hike had arrived. This is one of the highlights of spring for me because I get to wander through the forest with no fear of getting lost, guided by Pete and Mike, who know the trails like the back of their hands. It’s also satisfying to know I’m raising money for MacMillan Cancer Support, a bunch of wonderful nurses who make life a little more bearable for those suffering with this terrible illness.
On Sunday, Commando had a fifteen mile run scheduled on his London Marathon training plan. When he said he fancied running in the New Forest I was putting on my boots before he’d even finished speaking. In my head I had visions of beautiful blue sky over purple heather on White Moor and maybe a pony or two in the distance. The actual walk couldn’t have been further from this if it had tried.
In early November 2012 Commando was training for his first ever half marathon. His longest race at the time was 10k, just over six miles, so a thirteen point one mile half marathon was a huge step. Sensibly, he had a proper training plan and was sticking to it religiously despite some rather wet weather. On the first Sunday in November he decided to go out to the New Forest for his longest run ever, fourteen miles. He didn’t have to ask me twice if I wanted to come along. It turned out to be quite an experience. Continue reading water water everywhere – first published 4 November 2012
One of my favourite childhood books was Alice in Wonderland. My copy was a thing of beauty that once belonged to Pappy and had colourful illustrations by artist Gwynedd M Hudson. I read it countless times and it captured my imagination. Alice Liddell, the inspiration for the story, lived most of her life in Lyndhurst in the New Forest and is buried in the churchyard there. As the Tuesday weather forecast hardly mentioned rain at all I thought I’d pay it a visit. Continue reading Lyndhurst, an adventure in Wonderland