A Warm Welcome in the Boardroom

As my team, my brother Constantine, and the Trussell Trust and Foodbank representatives were led to their seats for the second half of the match, Frank and I were led by Chloe Turner across the road to where I could have a much needed shower.

Though I had hoped to be in and out in a matter of minutes, so as to see part of the second half, it was easier said than done – any movement was difficult. Untangling the bird’s nest of my hair took 10 minutes alone. By the time I was washed and wrapped in warm clean clothing and had limped back to the stadium, the match was almost over – we could hear the last cheers as the Canaries won the match.

We were reunited with our group and led up into the boardroom for the post match celebrations. On entering the boardroom clapping started, as we were welcomed once again.

I had previously wondered how on earth I’d manage to make it through an hour and a half on my feet chatting with everyone – well I shouldn’t have wasted a thought on that. The warm reception made sure that my energy, strength, and high spirits kept me going – I felt none of the exhaustion that was to hit me later.

Delia Smith instantly came over to congratulate me and to have a chat – after having followed her recipes for many years it was a delight and an honour to finally meet her. We chatted for a long while, after which I presented her with a copy of my book, “The Smile of Endurance”. I was delighted to also receive a copy of her latest book, “Delia’s Happy Christmas” (and thrilled when I discovered a chapter on vegetarian Christmas treats!).

I also had a book for David McNally, and after presenting it to him, proceeded to spend a long time chatting with him, his wife, daughter and Constantine.

The company, the knowledge that I’d achieved the challenge, and the wonderful welcome kept me full of energy, and before I knew it, it was time to present the Mayor of Salisbury’s letter, and the symbolic bag of tea to Grant from the Norwich Trussell Trust.  I had carried the letter and the tea with me as I ran – both arrived in better shape than I’d expected!

It had been a wonderful way to tie up a truly memorable arrival after what had possibly been my toughest challenge to date. As Frank, Mark, LluĂ­s and I all made our way to our hotel, after having said goodbye to everyone, we were exhausted but brimming with laugher, wonderful memories and amazing experiences. It had been a team experience from start to finish, and we felt even more united than we had when we had set off three days earlier.

Happy Halloween to all and …Kilometrate!

2 Responses to “A Warm Welcome in the Boardroom”

  • vilaprat:

    Hotel = DUCHA! Volver a ser humano después de tres días! Por la noche batí el record mundial en dormirme. Mi cabeza aún no había alcanzado la almohada y ya estaba completamente en Mode OFF.

    Por cierto … nos adelantamos al Halloween con una magnĂ­fica cena de zombies. Cuatro tios raros de naranja, callados y adormecido comiendo una pizza. Imagino que el camarero no lo va a olvidar en su vida.

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