12 days to go

Each day of this last week the little voice in my head made one very convincing argument as to why I should NOT walk. I was quick to listen. Sunday’s voice was less easily ignored (it was Rob’s!)
So out I toddled into that approaching storm. Quite the adventure it was too……up on Glengarry Ridge right next to me, a sheet of roofing was lifted off a carport. The eucalyptus trees in Parr’s Park were bending (a bit). And best of all, I witnessed a guy playing his guitar. Nothing spectacular about that in and of itself, but when you consider he was also driving a car at the same time, it was quite some feat.
Made me wonder what things I missed during the week!
Also made me remember some of the special moments of my training over the past few months.
Every single time I’ve been out walking someone I know has honked or waved – it’s great to feel connected to community.
One time when I was asking for directions in the pouring rain the guy had his own question: “Is this what you do on a rainy Saturday morning?” He even offered to give me a taxi fare home and suggested I make a strong cup of coffee. I’m not sure if he thought the 100km goal or the rainy training was worse.
The following week near that same spot another guy stopped his van and asked if I was training to go to Nepal – all based on the fact that he had seen me walking with a backpack two weeks’ running!
The best stopping vehicle contained the lady who pulled over and offered me a ride. Needless to say, I had to decline.
However, I was not always so nobly intentioned. There was the time when I tried to convince one of the other team members to hitch a ride – while we did end up talking to a couple at the Cascades (who, by the way, were about to go in the very direction we were, but in their car, and who WOULD have given us a lift), we did not succumb. At least, not to unauthorised modes of transport. The Other Team Member may have succumbed to a momentary lapse of pride. This couple was raving about how they had just walked 13 km and Other Team Member whipped out his tracking device and nonchalantly read the display – at that stage well over 30km and we still had another ten or so to go!
Then there was the young girl who ran up behind me and gave me a bit of a fright. She was barefoot and asked if I had a phone. When I answered in the affirmative and asked if she would like me to phone someone for her she looked most disappointed. She’d been hoping to sell me hers so that she could catch a bus home with the money. I didn’t have any cash on me and was still 5km from home myself, but explained that if she could wait an hour I would happily come back in my car and drop her home. She declined my offer and I’ve since wondered if I should have offered her the pair of sandals I was carrying in my backpack.

Yes, it’s been an interesting training time, and is looking all the rosier as it comes to an end;-)


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