Archive for 31/08/2010

The flavour of the Ultra Pyrene

Only 12 hours remain until I set off on the Ultra Pyrene, and we are all preparing for it. I’ve already hung my amulets and teddies from my pack, and its ready with the GPS, isotonic tablets and gels. My iPod is charging along with my cell phone, all tht’s left is to prepare tomorrow’s maps and fill my pack with water.

The presentation with GENE from the ASEM Federation went well – we shared the table with Andonis Goitia. After the presentation, we stayed for a while with Andonis and Beatriz, sharing our philosophies of life which are rather similar.

Afterwards, we went down to the Town Hall at the Playa de la Concha where we welcomed Jordi who arrived by train. We all went down to the beach where I filled the bottle with water from the Cantabrian sea.

I’m very emotional reading all the messages that have come in – all the team is feeling the same way. From now on the team will be replying to messages and phone calls, as it will be impossible for me. I want you all to know though, that I will be reading them, when I am too exhausted to read them in the evenings, the team will read them, and they will give both the team and I strength.

Well, this new adventure begins finally, tomorrow morning between 4:30 and 5am in front of the Town Hall. The challenge lies before me like a white page; waiting for my footsteps to tell this new story – The Ultra Pyrene. We’ll know in 12 days what’s going to fill the chapters, all the surprises that are awaiting me, and all the obstacles that I will have to overcome. This is Adventure – full of surprises, with no security, but with a special magic, a flavour, unique to each one. The flavour of this particular adventure will be the Ultra Pyrene.


Preliminary Steps

Here we are, Siscu, Oz, la Pequeña Mar, Sheel and I in McCan Kilometrar (home being Can Kilometrar, and our fabulous mobile home being from McRent being McCan Kilometrar) in the campsite at Igueldo, some 5 km from San Sebastian.

We left home at 9.30am sharp, so as to have plenty of time to arrive. We had an extremely comfortable trip up here, the first in McCan Kilometrar for the team, and one of the few for me – because as of  the day after tomorrow, I’ll be kilometrating. We were all excited setting off, and the feeling grew during the journey. La Pequeña and I sat at the table, La Pequeña writing down the Ultra Pyrene recipes and discussing communication with the town halls, of which there will be much, as we will have huge support along the way from almost all of the municipalities at the end of the stages.

I feel as if on an excursion, on holiday even though I’m very conscious that the excursion and holiday ends in less than 34 hours at 5am on Wednesday. The holiday ends and an adventure, the Ultra Pyrene begins. I’m delighted that I’m so close to the challenge, and yet so relaxed, so excited and so looking forward to setting off. I’m not expecting a walk in the park, nothing like that. My experience has me more extremely aware that soon I’ll be lining in a kind of nightmare. There will be suffering, pain, exhaustion and more obstacles than I can count, without a doubt…but there will also be joy, smiles, laughter, heart and more human gems than I can count. The positive will outweigh the negative.

Life is like this; if we look at what we have instead of what we are missing, is we look at the reasons which drive us, then for sure in this case it will come out in favour of the positive side. How can it not? Whatever the outcome, it will be a great adventure, whatever the outcome, I’m supporting a group of people who are strong, and will fight to live the best lives possible. So, whatever happens, my reasons for doing what I’m doing are more important that the obstacles which I will find along the tracks and roads during the 1000km which await me between here and Girona.

Tomorrow we have the a press conference with ASEM San Sebastian, GENE, at 11am and afterwards, we’ll go to the Town Hall so that I can go down to the La Concha beach to fill a little bottle of water from the Cantabrian Sea, which I will carry with me until I reach the Mediterranean, so as to unite both seas.

La Pequeña is cooking now, her first Ultra Pyrene recipe meal, here in McCan Kilometrar’s kitchen, Oz is reading, Siscu is videoing us and sorting things out, and I’m here sharing my steps prior to this new adventure with you, and the thoughts which are carrying me these last days before the first steps…


A Fluttering in my Stomach

It’s Sunday evening already and I have only a few hours left at home, the butterflies have begun their fluttering in my stomach. I’m excited, nervous and very emotional about setting off for San Sebastian tomorrow morning.

Oz and Mar will arrive early tomorrow, we’ll go out to Kilometrate a few kms, and Siscu will accompany us on his bike, and afterwards, at 9:30 at the latest, we’ll set off in the motor home (already “dressed”, packed and ready) for San Sebastian. Jordi will arrive by train on Tuesday Morning as tomorrow he has something to do in BCN.

On Friday afternoon, we sold the first of the Solidarity T-shirts and have many more reserved. Tomorrow we will have news here on the web about how the t-shirts can be ordered for those who are too far away to join us but want to support ASEM Catalunya.

V came for breakfast this morning and to finish up some details regarding his communication with the town halls, help us with some doubts about the route, and learn all the necessary language for co-habiting with Vito.Vito has adopted him for the next few days, and will live with him in San Sadurni until Stage 9, when they will both come out to join us all for the last 4 stages of the challenge. As soon as V had noted down Vito’s entire dictionary, Frank, Sheela, Vito, V and I went up to the mountain for a walk, after which Vito set off with V, and the rest of us returned home – I was more than a little sad saying goodbye to Vito.

V will be Base Camp fort the team, together with Ana and Joan, for monitoring my progress and communication. We’ll be exceedingly well supported by them, by Estefi, JMA and all the other people from further afield.

I have no more time to write today- I need all the rest I can get now. My emotions are high as is my excitement for setting off, and I have no doubt that we are all going to share an incredible adventure full of smiles, laughter and positive tears in among the suffering.

Alex Living Excellence
Alex Living Excellence
Alex Living Excellence
Alex Living Excellence
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