The courage to finish

23 April 2017

With my large latte in hand I went back to Guildhall Square to cheer along with the amazing Spitfire cheer squad. Sammy Saint, AKA Matthew, was there, still in his costume dancing around as if he hadn’t just run 10k in the swealtering heat. I kept looking at his feet in their oversized boots and imagined him taking them off later and pouring out a few pints of accumulated sweat. What a legend! Continue reading The courage to finish

The marathon returns to Southampton

23 April 2017

At quarter to eight this morning Commando and I were standing on The Avenue opposite The Common shivering a little and looking at the mist swirling across the city. Obviously it was a race day and this time no ducks of any kind were involved. For once I was the one wearing the race shirt with a number a timing chip pinned to it.  Continue reading The marathon returns to Southampton

March, not as many miles as I’d hoped…

My ambitious plan to walk, virtually, across Europe to Morocco hasn’t gone quite as well as planned so far this year, what with bad weather, mud and an unfortunate injury in February. Progress has been made though and Normandy, Versailles and Paris are now behind me. With spring ahead I hoped to make up some miles in March, walking across unchartered territory, at least for me, across central France. How did I’d do? Read on… Continue reading March, not as many miles as I’d hoped…

Care For a Walk – Totton to Matley, ponies dogs and a deer

18 March 2017

Care For a Walk day has come round again and, with it, the joy of a walk in the New Forest with zero chance of getting lost or ending up somewhere other than where I meant to. The annual spring walk for Macmillan Cancer Support is planned by Pete and Mike, experts on all the trails and paths because they are lucky enough to live in the forest. This means I don’t have to worry about anything other than putting one foot in front of the other and enjoying the scenery. Actually, this time, I did have to worry about not losing CJ, who has discovered he loves a walk too and wanted to come along.  Continue reading Care For a Walk – Totton to Matley, ponies dogs and a deer

Racing for a reason – first published 7 July 2014

Six thirty on a Sunday morning is not exactly my favourite time to be crawling out of bed. This is especially true after four ten hour shifts. There was a very good reason for my early start on the second Sunday of July 2014 though. Back at the beginning of the year I’d signed up for the Southampton 10k Race For Life. For me 10k isn’t exactly a stretch but Race For Life is something I feel quite passionate about. Cancer has touched my life more times than I care to remember and raising money for Cancer Research seems like the least I can do. Little did I know back then quite how poignant this particular Race For Life was going to be. Continue reading Racing for a reason – first published 7 July 2014

Agility training, hilarity, silly runs and bravery

15 March 2017

A couple of days ago I got a personal invite from Gill to take photos of his next agility training session at the sports centre. Obviously I said I’d go along but, as it would be dark, I wasn’t promising to come up with much in the way of decent photos. Darkness and fast moving objects are a photographic recipe for disaster, or at least blurryness. The sessions are interesting though and I always come away having learned something just by watching so I was looking forward to it.  Continue reading Agility training, hilarity, silly runs and bravery

Postcards from Southampton

The first picture postcard

22 February 2017

The very first picture postcard was posted in Fulham, London to the writer Theodore Hooke in 1840. It’s thought he hand painted the picture of postal workers and posted it to himself as a practical joke on the postal service. In 2002 the card sold for £31,750, making it a very expensive post card indeed. The first commercially printed postcards were lithograph prints produced in France by Léon Besnardeau in 1870. Over the next ten years sending postcards with pictures of holiday destinations became popular and so began the golden age of the picture postcard. Of course those days are long gone and Facebook posts have largely taken the place of sending postcards.  Continue reading Postcards from Southampton

Denny Wood, the penultimate CC6

19 February 2017

Today brought the penultimate CC6 at Denny Wood in the New Forest. For once it was an area I knew fairly well as I’ve walked through it many times as part of the Care For A Walk fifteen mile fundraiser. Usually it is muddy and I had the feeling today was going to be no exception. On a different day I might have gone for a wander across White Moor to Lyndhurst and Bolton’s Bench a coulple of miles down Beaulieu Road, or crossed the road and done my usual trick of getting lost in Matley Wood. Today though I was being gentle on my poor old foot with its healing blister. Besides, there wouldn’t be too much time as, James, one of the Spitfire’s super fast runners, was running his first CC6.  Continue reading Denny Wood, the penultimate CC6

February virtual walking – where am I now?

While the real world in February was all about mud, mist, a fair bit of rain and a badly blistered foot, my virtual journey continued. January ended in France, just outside Évreux, heading for Paris. It seemed a long way from my final destination, Morocco, but, as they say, it’s more about the journey than the destination, so where did February take me? Continue reading February virtual walking – where am I now?

Race two, The Gosport 5k – first published 1 june 2014

June 2014, Commando had finished the Gosport Golden mile and we were sitting on the shingle at Stokes Bay relaxing. It was a warm day and even a mile, when run at top speed, is a huge effort. Of course this wasn’t the end of the running for the morning, there was still a 5K race to be run… Continue reading Race two, The Gosport 5k – first published 1 june 2014