So here’s the rest of the marathon story.
That’s Jim up near the start in Greenwich Park on Sunday morning. Bizarrely he’d declined my kind offer of holding out a TVR at the 22 mile mark in case he needed pepping up by then and opted for running gels instead. No accounting for taste, is there? There were a few other people there, too:
Whilst Neil delivered Jim to the start, Jen and I decamped to the Highway, as waiting there we had the chance of seeing Jim at the halfway point as well as around the 22-mile mark as he headed back into town towards the finish after running around the Isle of Dogs. The pics get a bit less reportage-like at this point as we were concentrating hard to start with on spotting Elite runners and then waiting to see Jim and hoping we didn’t miss him.
We’d also been given these at Excel on Saturday.
You can make an AWFUL lot of noise with laminated, concertina-d cardboard, it turns out. Especially if you’re yelling at the same time.
We saw the ‘WeirWolf‘, David Weir, swoosh past us in a very tight second place at the 22-mile mark, no pic as he was moving too fast and we were screaming ‘go on go on GO ON DAVID’ at him. Classy, me and Jen, you know.
We also saw Richard Whitehead, the astounding runner that we first saw when winning his 200m Gold (‘Gold! Always believe in your soul…’) medal in the Paralympics last summer. This is him going through the halfway mark:
Then we saw him again on the way back, at 22 miles. We were very excited at this, so much so that I might have shouted ‘David’ at him rather than ‘Richard’. Ahem. Still, he seemed to be enjoying himself, and unless I’m hallucinating he waved at us too (not caught on camera):
(he’s behind the chap in the orange, obvs.) Also spotted: Iwan Thomas, referred to as ‘Jen’s New Boyfriend’ all weekend as we’d seen him at Excel whilst we were fetching Jim’s number and Jen’d come over a bit all unecessary at seeing a person from the TV in the flesh (she doesn’t get out much, you know).
We also spent a lot of time shouting encouragement at other runners (whether they wanted it or not). If anyone reading this knows the chap who ran with ‘Stockport Dave’ written on his shirt then I shouted ‘Stockport Dave, Stockport Dave RUN’ at him both ways. He looked up and saw me both times, so if he wonders who the mad woman was shrieking at him at 13 and 22 miles that he’d never seen before, well. Wonder no longer. There was ‘Suit Boy’, who was running in a suit (obvs), a Captain Jack Sparrow (very close to the front and running well) and, sadly, several men in mankinis that we sort-of wished we’d not seen. Not a good look at the best of times, one can only hope that they were getting paid an AWFUL lot of money by friends and relatives to run in such outfits. There was also some chap who had supporters that had a sign saying ‘No Finish, No Vegas’. We liked that a lot. We hope he gets to Vegas.
But we were there for Jim, who finished in a super-swizzy fast 3 hours, 20 minutes and 11 seconds and raised more than £3000 for Refuge. So he gets the last pic:
(sadly we were all FAR too over-excited to think of making him move so that the background is not mainly taken up with a rubbish bin. Ooops.)
As some of you may know, the lovely Jen Arnall-Culliford has been a pal for a few years now, and we’ve met her husband, the just-as-lovely (and somewhat long-suffering, if you believe his alter-ego, @VeufTricot on Twitter) Jim Arnall-Culliford a few times too. So when we heard about Jim running the London Marathon for Refuge, we offered to put them up for the weekend and help in any way we could. Both Wendy and I are only just over the river from the start (well, in global terms) and both TBk households are seasoned Marathon spectators (this year was Wendy’s 15th consecutive marathon, I have chickened out on the years when the weather was bad…).
So, Jen and Jim arrived Friday evening. Saturday morning we set off to Excel for Jim to go through the final registration bits and pick up his number and microchip. Here is Jim in the queue for his number:
and here he is with his number:
no longer Jim, but Runner 45699! Have to say, the organisation at Excel was fantastic. Super speedy, teeny tiny queues. We did a bit of wandering around the associated exhibition, and then thought we’d pop over to Greenwich so that Jim could see where he’d be starting from. We thought we’d go the scenic route, so we popped onto this:
and ‘flew’ over the Thames. Here’s Neil (Mr. TBk) and Jen in the capsule:
and here’s the view just before we set off whilst waiting for our capsule:
looking back to the Olympic Stadium and The Orbit:
and back to the ‘flight’ once we’d landed:
We wandered along the Thames Path towards Greenwich, crossing from East to West along the way:
And when we got to the top of Greenwich Park, just outside the Observatory, we saw this little sweetie:
It was the coat that made me excited to start with (so cute!) but then we noticed the claws… Never seen a dog with painted claws before. Considered painting Iman’s, briefly, but decided that having functioning fingers was more important in the general scheme of things.
Anyway, wandered over to the Start, showed Jim where he’d be then set off home. Saw this sign at the bottom of the hill, which amused me.
Got home, Neil made fresh pasta for dinner to go with the ragu I’d made the day before (requested specially by Jim) – Jim ate rather a lot of it:
(ok, perhaps not quite all of that dish full), and then it was time for bed. I’ll tell you all about the actual Marathon day tomorrow, this post has been long enough I think. Just in case you’re wondering, that hoodie Jim is wearing is going to be a pattern available from Jen fairly soon… I think she should call it ‘In da E9 Hood’…
A different Canterberet colourway.
The same grey, but with egg-yolk yellow contrast trim.
Knitted for a pal who loves berets and who has announced that it’s ‘one the nicest things I’ve ever been given’. Hurrah! So fabulous to know that a knit is so appreciated. Vague project details here. Pattern here.
This is my favourite teapot. It’s quite small, ancient and was once lovely lustreware in a camely-metallicy-beige, but is now a bit dull in places. It is quite well used though, and goodness knows how old as I found it at a table sale one day about, ooooh, 20 years ago.
This is a lovely, lovely camel at the Oasis Camel Centre in Suffolk. I have a bit of a thing about camels (and goats and llamas and alpacas – I think it’s the eyes and those noses). I do not think they smell bad, am not in the least traumatised by the fact that they might spit (which is what lots of people say) and am not frightened by them. Here I am with another camel:
What, I hear you cry, has any of this wittering to do with knitting? Well, I give you this:
A knitted camel tea cosy! Isn’t it just the best tea cosy ever? Seen in the window of Yarn on the Square in Ely a couple of weeks ago when I was meeting best friend who lives in Norwich at a vaguely halfway-point for a bit of a day out. Yes, I know Ely is not really halfway between Norwich and London but it is a really lovely city and easier to park in than Cambridge, so it’s a Good Place To Go. Anyway. Yarn on the Square had a whole window display of tea cosies that they were auctioning off for charity so I just had to go in and bid on this one. And I won it! So yesterday we went back to Ely to collect it (and have lunch with another pal whilst we were there, even I’m not daft enough to do a 140 mile round trip just for a tea cosy). I love that his head and neck are a spout cosy but what really, really really made me want him (apart from the sheer camel-ness) were the little bells on his saddle blanket.
Just how cool are they?
I have no idea who knitted him, but many, many thanks for doing so if you ever read this. Yarn on the Square is a really lovely yarn shop, do pop in if you’re ever in Ely. I was very stupid yesterday and spent so much time nattering I didn’t ask the name of the lovely lady I was nattering to but it must have been either Christine or Ginette who own and run YotS. Their Bitch and Knit night is currently knitting vegetables for Ely Cathedral’s Harvest Festival. Normally I don’t go in for knitted cakes, veg etc being strictly a garment / cushion / blanket girl myself, but these veg were amazing too:
I was particularly taken with the blackberry which was beautifully beaded. I might even knit one at some point.
Posted: July 16th, 2011
Categories: general wittering
, weekend whimsy
Comments: 2 Comments
Wildlife in the garden. Ev is not impressed. I heard her muttering ‘flea-ridden vermin’ under her breath, and she has ventured out for the first time in ages, presumably to claim the garden as hers. Could be interesting.
Posted: May 14th, 2011
Categories: weekend whimsy
Comments: 1 Comment
This is Ev, or Heather. She rules the house. She can bite bamboo knitting needles in half in one swift chomp.
We didn’t mean to have her, but she’d been dumped at our local vets in an appalling condition, the worst case of ear mites he’d ever seen and a hideously infected back leg caused, we think, by being left sitting on dirty, wee-sodden bedding which had caused a sore and then become infected. Her hock joint had been destroyed by the resulting abscess and a rabbit specialist had told our vet ‘either put her down or take her leg off – nothing else to do’.
So he took her leg off, and she came to us as a stray just to recuperate for a few days. Nearly 3 years ago now. Brian the vet is not daft.
Missing a leg doesn’t really bother her, sometimes she has to have her ear scratched for her and she can’t sit up to wash her nose and ears like other rabbits do but she is a happy, healthy, naughty housebun. Who has no idea she’s a rabbit and thinks she’s a dog, but that’s another story.
Posted: January 30th, 2011
, weekend whimsy
Comments: 4 Comments