Epic cycle ride undertaken by unfit, overweight, not middled aged lady

I visited Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos in 2002. One of the things that really struck me about the countries was the indefatigable people, the welcome extended to visitors and the simple joy taken in small pleasures. But, having visited the Museum of the American War in Ho Chi Minh City, seen the 'Danger UXB' signs in Laos and read the good news headline in a paper in Cambodia: ' Deaths from UXBs down to 3 this month. Only 40 maimed.' I was acutely aware of the toll still being taken on the population.

Over the years I have pondered the munitions still there and this year I have finally decided to get off my bottom and do something. So I have, somewhat impetuously and with little regard for my physical fitness, cycling ability or dodgy left knee decided to join the MAG cycle ride from Ho Chi Minh City to Ankor Wat. I will be doing this the first week or so in Feb 2011 and it does involve a couple of days of over 100km in 30 degree heat. Having signed up I have been told that neither a rickshaw nor an electric bikes are options and that doing the distance on my own pedals is expected.

Donation link is further down on the right - I have paid for my own flights and contributed enough to cover living expenses so all money raised from sponsorship will go to MAG.

This is my blog of my progress to get on the road and when I am there - assuming I will be capable of rational thought after a day of unaccustomed exercise.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

MAG Party and final training

Finally - the food's out!
Following the revelation at Christmas that the date was getting a bit close which was underlined last week with a delivery of 'final' information plus a MAG t shirt  I have been concentrating a bit more on the training with several nights of 20-30 miles (all at about 17 mph) so feeling reasonably confident that the 40 mile days are doable.... but very scared about the 60-65 mile days.

Have managed to get various bits of equipment sorted out (mostly as pressies for birthday and Christmas) so now the proud owner of cycling shirts, socks etc and a camelbak (backpack drinking thing). Once I have done the challenge (assuming I survive the ordeal :-) wondering what I will do with all the stuff and decided that I will probably keep up with a less arduous cycling routine but have earmarked the camelbak as a 1.5 litre g and t, summer party delivery system.

Food glorious food
We had the MAG fundraising/birthday/fare thee well party last night which initially didn't seem to be smiled on by the party gods as I  picked the weekend where everyone I asked had other engagements and then a tube strike started.... But, we in the end we decided to run with it and had a great fantastic party with a lot of people traveling quite some distance - I certainly had a fab time which was perfect since I am on a strict no drinking regime until I fly on Friday week...

Yes some people braved the extra hot!
I did spend much of yesterday morning cooking up chili and similar items; did do the mild version of chili but my planned thermonuclear level for the 'brave it if you dare' chili didn't come off due to my super hot, only use one drop or die chili sauce had finally given up the ghost.... but judging by the comments and amount of alcohol consumed I think that the food was a little piquant...
The chili is THAT hot...

Tucking into chili....

We did run a collection and managed a whopping £140 towards the trip so very pleased with that; I'm still several hundred short but getting there so will be chasing all the people who have said they will sponsor me but haven't quite got round to it.... wondering whether the east end tradition of knuckle dusters might help :-) As well as the donations I was given lovely presents and also flowers which made me feel great - I was even given a perfect bike survival kit (first aid kit, deodorant foot wipes, cystitis medicine and a bottle of homemade blueberry voddie) 

Struggled a bit with formatting the pictures onto this but suspect it will be a sign of things to come as I will post whenever possible from the event itself.... although I suspect most of sentiments may be a little dismal....

TTFN and thank you to everyone who has attended a party, sponsored me and/or supported me in this endeavour - you know who you are and you have been marvelous

1 comment:

  1. Update - we received a late party donation taking the total to £145!