So it is Wednesday night before the Saturday morning when I start the Thames Path Trail. Today – and probably later than I should – I checked that I still have all the gear: the rucksack, the waterproof insert bags, the headlight, reflectors and the fluorescent jacket. Check. In fact, my rucksack still had my participant number attached from London2Brighton last year. The first aid kit is ok, but needs a top up of plasters and ibuprofen. I never used even one painkiller on the long walk from Land’s End to John O’Groats in 2014 but the sustained single 100 km stretch is considerably more painful in more body parts than you could shake a stick at.
Today, the organisers of this weekend’s event posted a link for tracking so, if you really wish, you can follow where I am. Not quite live minute-by-minute progress but updates as I reach each of the end of four stages and their mid-points.
After clicking on the link above, then simply type my number 2380 in the search bar in the top left-hand corner of the screen. If you prefer, or you forget the number, don’t forget my name. You can type SPICER and, sadly, I am the sole competitor of that name, so I am representing the 5,000+ Spicer clan in Britain. I hope they will all, in their own way, be cheering me on. I know some will. My start time is 8:40am on Saturday morning and don’t expect me to finish until at least something around the same time on Sunday morning.
Continued thanks, many many thanks indeed, for the donations and pledges of sponsorship. An amusing moment came with one anonymous donation whose message included, “Ace, porky pal!”. For a minute or two, though extremely grateful for the donation, I did wonder if the small amount of weight gain was more noticeable than I had thought. Then the penny dropped. Yes, anagram of ‘Rocky Appeal’. Haha, good one, and thank you for your generosity too. Having been through that brief existential crisis, I am happy for whatever other insults any sponsor wants to throw at me!
A reminder of the link: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Keith-Spicer3
I am at work tomorrow (Thursday), travelling up and registering on the Friday before the event. Of course, the weather forecasts have been scrutinised regularly over the week and one thing that looks certain is that it’s going to rain a lot in London on Friday. Saturday is less clear-cut and different forecasts say different things. Interestingly, the BBC weather website shows completely different outlook to those BBC weather forecasts after the news programmes. So, anything could happen; I am expecting more dry than wet, but a likely shower or two at some time.
I will be taking at least Monday to Wednesday off work next week to recover. After travelling home on the Sunday, judging by last year, I might be struggling to get around much until late Monday, and my sleep will be a bit all over the place for a couple of days. But I will be feeling pretty good about myself if I can complete this event. Keep your fingers crossed.