Friday, 12 September 2014

Tick Tock

So this will be my last post prior to departing for the Arch to Arc. The clock is now counting down and I have one sleep to go.  I am sitting at work and juggling last minute plans, trying not to get too stressed.  I was told at 10 am by my Race Director, Dan Earthquake that there is a swim window on Monday that appears to be taking shape.  This means I will need to start the run at 8pm, but possibly at Midday, tomorrow, the 13th September.  So it's finally here.  Even now, so firmly in denial am I that I am hoping we can go for 8pm and not Midday, because that gives me an extra 8 out that logic!

But before I get all excitable pre event, it's time for the last sea song.  There are so many that I could choose from.  Putting together my playlist of 190 nautical songs was great fun and an education. There are some fantastic bits of music that I have grown to love about the sea and swimming. It is as much a muse as the Sirens themselves.  I still think "Song of the Siren" and  Corbin Murdoch's "Channel Swimmer" from my last post are some of my favourite songs.  They have become part of my lexicon and will always remind me of this strange, frightening and chaotic period of my life.  One more for you which has lots of minor chords and a lovely poignancy to it is this number by Frank Black and the Catholics - "The Swimmer"

I don't have much to say at the moment. Obviously, I am nervous.  I guess I fear failure but I fear lots of things.  I do know it will be incredibly hard.  I just hope that my experience of being in dire straits and not stopping will prove enough to sustain me.  Yes, it's the Channel that intimidates and it is the one element of the event that I don't have control over it.

So here are the things that I know:

1) It will be hard
2) It will not follow my plan
3) Time will slip away
4) I will worry about my crew
5) I will want to stop
6) I will finish

I put number (6) in because you need to be a bit bullish about stuff.  I have done a few sales courses in my time, you know.

I think that is enough.  I will let you know how it goes.  I can't believe that all this training and all these years will eventually be condensed into a few short days.

One more song, seeing as this is so short, but don't forget to donate to my charity Aspire.  An amazing place, and whilst I have been typing Paula Craig has been in to see me.  When I got into triathlons back in 2005, my triathlon club did all its fundraising for this charity called Aspire.  It was a charity that helped people who had sustained a spinal cord injury gain independence after injury and didn't mean that much to me back then.  Well, until I heard about Paula;  She was a top quality athlete (sub 3 hours for London marathon) and was returning from a training ride along a road near where I live when she was hit by an ex-copper who had forgotten his glasses and was using the kerb to find his way along the road.  Paralysed in the accident, she didn't seem to let a broken spine phase her and will tell you , and I now she is being truthful, that she just didn't feel sorry for herself or bitter about what happened.  She came second in the London Marathon wheelchair event and made history by being the only person to both run and "push" the event.  She represented GB as Paralympian triathlete and also continued her career as a senior police officer in the murder squad. Understandably she was awarded the MBE.   I wish she would blog, because she is truly inspirational and will be someone I shall seek strength from as I trudge along. Anyway, Aspire helped her at the time with adapted accommodation and she has always been a great advocate for our work.  So you could donate if you have some spare loose change at :

You will feel good once you have done it. I promise

Final Song:

Thanks for reading.

For Louise, Jane, Daryl and Doug. Thinking of you and all the myriad reasons unfathomable to so many.