Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Birthday Bruises

We planned a trip to Coniston around my birthday in April, so I worked in the morning and then drove up, Dave and Albertless. Dave was working in Wales and caught the train (or many trains) to Windermere that evening. I ran from Coniston to Tilberthwaite and back in the afternoon, on my own, stopping just before the descent to Coniston just to look about and smile. No one in sight, just me. It was perfect.

Picked up Dave and had a few birthday beers in Windermere, happy days.

The next day Dave and I planned to run from Coniston to Wasdale and back. Ant and the Fairy had come up and were running from Ambleside to Coniston and back, recceing the L50 route, so we were all meeting later. That was the plan...

Had a lovely run down into Seathwaite, talking about the Western States 100, my new OBSESSION. I need to complete a qualifying race in the UK (luckily the WHW) and then enter the race in November, although it's a ballot so I might not get a place this year. In which case I'd just run another qualifier and keep applying; I think if you don't get a place in the first 2 years then you will get a place in the 3rd year of trying!
Stopped off for a spot of bouldering in Seathwaite
Took it really easy, having an impromptu picnic at one point and just enjoying the day. Jogging along the river path into Boot I tripped and fell headlong, twisting my left foot underneath me. Lots of swearing and shaking later, realised I couldn't run on it but could walk if I kept my foot straight, so we headed to the pub, obviously! I left messages with Ant and Fairy telling them where we'd be and we decided to walk; seemed like a good idea at the time.

Knowing the L100 route backwards I hadn't brought a map (1st mistake) so we guessed at the right way to go via the roads. All good, Ant called, they were still running but would head out and look for us when they finished. So on we hobbled! It got colder so I put on everything I had with me, luckily the fashion police weren't on patrol...
Looking a bit of a jumble sale
Coming to a T junction, I thought we should go right but it was a long way back to Coniston, whilst Dave's iphone said, no go left, it's the quickest way. So left it was (2nd mistake). Back into Seathwaite! Still in good spirits, although we had started to ration jelly babies.
Beautiful Limousin Bull in Seathwaite
Headed up Wrynose Pass, with me really limping now, miserable as sin, and no one stopped to help. I got a phone signal at the stop and who should ring but Andy Mouncey, wanting to know where we were meeting the next day. Just hearing a nice, happy voice set me off, full on trembling bottom lip and wailing moment. Lordy, good job we're mates Mounce! Finally got through to Ant and the Fairy, who were desperately trying to find us as a lovely couple stopped and asked if we needed some help! So we cadged a lift with them (it was her birthday too) till we saw Ant's car and were rescued.

Straight to the pub in Coniston, after 2 pints and a massive lamb dinner I didn't care that my foot was swelling nicely. Back in the campsite Ant and the Fairy produced a chocolate birthday cake and homemade blueberry cheesecakes, pink fizz and pressies! The Fairy had bought me some fabulous red and white stripey knee socks that I'd been hankering over in Ambleside; they're sooo long, or rather my legs are sooo short they were christened the Trouser Socks. Ant gave me 10 raffle tickets for a WS entry! I have very nice friends...

We left a drunken Fairy alone in the tent with the chocolate cake (3rd mistake). She stuffed it in her face, went to the loo in the middle of the night, said a polite hello to an elderly lady in the loos till she realised she had chocolate cake ALL over her face, classic.

Woke to a horribly swollen, black foot which has taken weeks to get better, although I can still feel it when running on rough trails. Bugger.

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