What's this all about?

A new adventure beckons, and this is once again about my personal journey to make it happen.

It might make you laugh; it might make you cry, but by 'eck lads and lasses, it will be worth a quick skeg every now and then, tha's for sure.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Chris, Jack, Jon, Paul and a cast of thousands (or maybe a little less)

(Note to Jack - your video is right at the end)

Eight miles ...... let me say that again ... EIGHT miles I did on Sunday. One tyre and the searing heat, and I did EIGHT MILES. My only regret was I couldn't try to do another eight miles again today because I SO wanted to but work beckoned on a Monday morning.

Yes it was tough and yes after 5.25 miles (sorry, that's 8.44905km's for our European readers) I had to sit under the shade of a tree for 15 minutes as I was seriously overheating but I did it. Not least without huge thanks to Jon Gregg (Greggs' Sandwiches on Wood Lane near where I live; they're fantastic in taste and fantastic value) who brought me a cold bottle of water and spent the best part of 45 minutes trying to explain why fishing was such amazing a pastime. Errr .... nope, still don't get the appeal. Sorry Jon.

Anyway we'll come to that in a minute but here's an announcement ..... drum roll please .... I'm passed the £5500 fundraising mark and have a total of £7000 pledged so far. Long way to go but I think a few people were surprised I got this far this quickly. Oh and my thanks to Sue Carter at Barclays Corporate and David Miller at Bartfields for sorting out a little problemette regarding the depositing of cheques.

By the way, given this posting is jumping around all over the place here's my current list of things to do ...

a) Speak to Glenn @ Piccolinos (Sheffield) to arrange to meet re. a fundraosong evening
b) Chase the contact at (can't tell you where) about possible involvement/sponsorship
c) Collect the LOVELY £1500+ cheque from Zinc Bar & Grill and send to Sue Carter
d) Collect £165 from others (done today, to be banked next week)
e) Arrange to meet Tina B about fundraising event
f) Confirm date with Claire McCulloch re. room availability for the above event
g) Chase Richard at the magazine who asked for more info on the trek; is there another article in the offing?
h) Find that flippin' e-mail that has the telephone number for the inflatable life-size snow globe provider and call them about its whereabouts.
i) Plan the photo opp that Sir Ranulph Fiennes has agreed to in Bradford
j) Emma Avhede promised me a free massage. Book it !
k) Sandra Nundy, the ever patient Sandra still wants to meet to help if she can
l) Think about the double0stand at the Yorkshire Mafia exhibition next March; some providers of props may need months and months of lead time
m) Which charity can get us some exposure on local TV?
n) Tyre-pulling is fast becoming an interest for people; arrange 6 'events' (see quote from Jon Greeg at the end of this posting)
o) Get 3-5 logo'd polo shirts organised
p) Mark Evans you are a star!! He's offered me a telesales person for an hour a week to fundraise so plan, communicate and thank (again and again)
q) Remember to call Jane Wicks back (done)
r) Paul has offered me a chance to be featured on his corporate blog (40k+ subscribers); arrange !
s) Ski equipment guy; chase again (nicely and hopefully)
t) Can I fit in attending the YCR 'Bounce' Guiness Book of Records event on my birthday?
u) Chase the supermarket who promised to respond to my fundraising request; could be worth £4k
v) Remember to give out the cheeky fundraising Moonpig cards to the Starbucks teams in Leeds on Thursday given Starbucks in Manchester have already fundraised and another branch is offering to.
w) Think about PR event at SnoZone at Xscape (my deliverable in order to get free use of the slope)
x) See Jen in Leeds and Anna in Harrogate soon to organise fundraising events at their restaurants (Leeds is hopefully the 28th September)
y) Prepare for the announcment on October 1st; it could be a great boost !!!!
z) Save a bit of time for yourself

Oh yes, there's a couple more things but they can wait to be added to the list. So on to yesterday (is that a oxymoron?)

The heat was topping 75 degrees (that's 24 degrees Celcius for our European readers) but I had my car loaded with the equipment, a bag of food/fuel, a spare t-shirt and a few bottles of liquid

(On my PC this photo is 'landscape' but it stays 'portrait' on here - help)
I set off and after less than a mile a figure popped into view a hundred yards ahead (although how a guy who is 6' 4" tall can 'pop' into view I don't know). It was Chris, my youngest daughters ex-drum teacher. He'd seen me and wanted to wish me luck ... but declined to have a go. The bigger they are the more scared they get? Anyway he had dinner to cook so it was still lovely that he took the time to say hello; it started the drag off wonderfully.

Then there were three girls, one at least who'd seen me before and asked if I'd "done my thing yet". Bless, yes and that's why I'm still walking round with a tyre strapped to me in the searing afternoon heat. Still their interest was genuine and their intentions nice enough. Thank you girls for taking the time to say hello.

Following them were: -

* a couple of polite lads who asked what I was doing

* a lovely young German-with-an-Australian-accent-living-in-Leeds woman who I forgive for not bringing me a cold beer because she had such a lovely accent, pretty face and a dazzling smile

* no-one from Peroni to actually deliver a chilled bottle; does anyone know the address to write to and complain?

* a couple who'd seen me before and asked how it was going

* the girls stood in the beck who simply asked why I just didn't use huskies when I went to the Pole instead of having to drag my equipment in a sled. Isn't youthful innocence unnerving sometimes?

* the group of lads who seemed keen to have a go with the harness but decided not to when it came to the crunch

* the young ladies who applauded me as I went by, admitting they didn't know why I was doing what I was doing (but hey, what the heck, a fan club is a fan club right??), and ...

* the really nice guy in the motability scooter who chatted to me for a while as I rested between miles 3 & 4 and 5 & 6 . I really should have asked your name - I apologise.

Yes there were a few wise cracks from passing motorists, two of whom I hope are reading this; to the two lads who shouted some abuse from a crappy little car .... my suggestion is when you can pull a tyre for eight miles as part of your training to go to the North Pole and you're trying to raise £100 000 for charity, then you can laugh and shout but ... until then ... please feel free to add both your single brain cells together and maybe put your combined brainpower into thinking about driving or perhaps fundraising for me.

Then there was Jon Gregg; he promised he'd try to turn up and just spend some time with me in case I was bored and you'll not meet a nicer guy. He was thrilled to be offered the chance to have a go so I let him try out the harness on the flat. For his sons, please take note this is your Dad doing some light exercise.

Oh yes and typical; while Jon was pulling the tyre Paul (my PT) arrived to see how I was doing. He was just passing and wanted to see my progress & there I was, sat on the grass pulling up daisies and texting. NOT a good impression; I'll pay for that at the weekend when I'm back at the gym with him.

After that Jon walked with me, then had a go with a tyre up and down a slight incline for 600 yards (550m) and once I'd finished I offered him the chance to try both tyres up and down the hill near the gates. This is the view from the bottom.

Now I'll not tell you everything Jon said but, as he paused for the third time to catch his breath going back up the hill, he said "You do know I'm going to give you £50 towards your fundraising don't you? I was going to anyway but after trying this and realising just how hard it is .... you know you should get more people to try this and see just what you're going through." I will Jon, I will.

(Note - the yardage Jon did was as well as my 8 miles, just in case some smartypants thinks Jon did some of it for me ... Peter)

And so that leaves just the entry about my new friend Jack. What a lovely polite little boy, out for a walk with his Mum and Grandma. "What's that man doing?" I heard him ask so I told him and then asked if he'd like a go. Talk about a face beaming with delight !!!

Here is Jack, doing amazingly well with the tyre ... until he stopped for a breather and then I think it got a bit hard. Jack, you're a little hero. It took me 5 minutes to get this to download from my iPhone and, at one point, I was worried I was going to have to let poor Jack down but I did it eventually.

As we caught up with each other at the car his Mum explained where I was going and Jack asked if I was going there today or tomorrow. Youthful innocence rocks !!

My final thanks tonight goes to the lady at Iveridge Hall Health Club who simply smiled and said "I saw you yesterday. I was passing in my car and noticed you". Think I'm becoming known to more than just the 'Twitchers' - celebrity status it isn't but it's so nice to know that your efforts are noticed. I worked pretty hard at the gym tonight after that.

Good night

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