Tuesday, 24 April 2012

I didn't run the London Marathon

Sunday 22 April was a big day. I had been building up to it for months. I didn’t know what it was going to be like but expected something special. I didn’t run the marathon but it was a mega marathon-like achievement for me. @Dr_Neil_ (my flatmate) had asked me ages ago to keep the date free but steadfastly refused to tell me what we were going to be doing beyond it would be partially outdoors and I should take Jemima.

On the day itself he still wouldn’t tell me where we were going until I was in the car. I hadn’t guessed we would be doing this: PenguinEncounter at Seaview Wildlife

Not only had @Dr_Neil_ booked our ferry across to the Isle of Wight and the experience at the wildlife centre, he had also booked a table for us to have lunch at a lovely pub: The Boat House. And then we had time to kill before our ferry back to the mainland so we had a wander round various attractive locations and even had time to play some games in one of the amusement arcades. I’m not sure how I feel about our newly acquired additional flatmate even though I had to admire @Dr_Neil_’s skill with the claw crane to get him -  

The picture next to the smurf is one I took using @Dr_Neil_’s fancy camera. It was actually a double rainbow starting and ending in the sea.

The rainbow was just part of a wonderful day. The sun shone for most of it. We had an easy ferry ride across to the Isle of Wight and when we got to Seaview Wildlife it was fabulous to see so many different birds, otters, meerkats, wallabies and other creatures including fish. As well as beautiful live fish in tanks there were dead ones for us to feed to the penguins. It was an amazing experience. After joining other visitors in giving individual fish to a few penguins whilst they were swimming around,  
we were taken into the enclosure and given a bucket of fish each. Despite the warnings on most visitor information that penguins were not to be touched, we were encouraged to stroke and even tickle the tummies of a few individuals including the oldest resident.  
I had originally said I had no intention of ‘following’ a penguin on Facebook. Needless to say, having met Dippy it would be rude not to ‘like’ his Facebook page.

It has taken me a couple of days to recover from the marathon day but every second of the exertion was worth it. I must have walked a mile or more using Jemima over the course of the day and I have some wonderful memories if only my scrambled eggs will let me remember them. Thank goodness I also have the photographs http://www.flickr.com/photos/69825128@N00/sets/72157629513458338/

I expect my experience matches that for excellence of most London Marathon runners. They may have had to go the 26.3 miles or so distance but I went as far in my own way. Next year I may even join my MSer friend who recently walked a mile for Sport Relief - http://my.sportrelief.com/sponsor/sarahssportreliefmilewalk I expect you can still sponsor her or you could save your pennies for me - big stuff is happening and I would like as much support as possible. It starts with Cake! Cake Break

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