great to walk a few miles with Sharon and we were well impressed
with how she is coping with the Challenge. We also got to
have a look round the bus - it's very cramped, there's barely
room to pass each other in the aisles. Just seeing the organisation
of the event was also interesting..
We found Sharon
at the Decathlon car park at Canada Water at just gone 7pm on Saturday
night and walked the next two miles with her. All the athletes are
currently walking their miles with just a little bit of running
thrown in here and there. Sharon's helper carries a folding chair
for her to sit
on between miles - as you can't risk cutting it too fine to complete
your mile near the end of an hour you have to hang around for upto
5 minutes. Even this amount of rest can help Sharon recover for
the following mile.
the competitors and walkers set off from the petrol station forecourt
for their next mile, along a busy road with a lot of traffic. You
have to keep a constant eye out for cars turning into side roads,
broken paving slabs and other hazards as well as making sure you
still on route. After earlier scares where Sharon and Lloyd have
both gone off in the wrong direction the organisers have now put
markers on lamp posts along the course.
During the next
stop at 8.20pm - 9.40pm Sharon went off to get some sleep, her first
hour of the night. Luckily there was a nice pub called 'The Foy'
directly opposite the bus. We followed Sharon for the next 2 miles
to where the bus was parked at a fire station. Sharon likes to keep
pretty quiet during the miles between sleep sessions. This saves
her voice, and means
she doesn't have to wake up as much and finds it easier to get back
helper Nannette seemed very on-the-ball and well organised and knew
exactly what Sharon needed and when. Her job is an important one
as Sharon relies on her to wake her up just at the right time for
the next mile.
We left the
bus at that point and were very kindly offered a lift to the nearest
tube station by Jerry, one of the drivers.
On the Sunday
they happened to be parked near The Foy pub again, but going in
the other direction this time. We did another two miles with Sharon
and Bill back to the Canada Water stop.
We had to leave
them there and start on the long journey home but it was a well
worth while trip and so great to see how well Sharon is doing. It's
impossible for anyone who hasn't tried an event like this to understand
what it must be like, but seeing it all happen gives you a much