Of course, I think every race is winnable; this feeling generally lasts about 20 yards, until the good people are out of sight and the chance to even sneak in as third in age group disappears as that bloke that you've marked down as beatable (you know, the one with the appalling limp, the scars from his knee replacement and the rattly breathing that that inhaler clutched in his hand will never fix)speeds away as if launched from an aircraft carrier.
I think we're alone now, there doesn't seem to be anyone around...
So what on Earth is the point? Well there's beer at the end of every stage, but there may be more to it than that. Yes, it's a challenge, it's for charity (did we ever mention that?)it's been terrific fun in training, we've spent many happy hours debating exactly what that sharp stuff is that scratches your legs (it looks like a member of the pea family, but its fruit is actually razor blades)we've become intimately acquainted (stop making up your own jokes)with OS Maps, Mr A has carried his walking poles for hundreds of miles without actually using them more than once, but for me...
...it's all about not knowing. In 21st century Britain, it's really easy to spend your whole life never taking a risk. I need to put myself out there in situations which may or may not end well. I need the excitement, I need the adrenaline. It's me and my mate against the toughest terrain the Alps can throw at us.
It's been a bit of a serious post, but this is a serious time, so, as we fly out tomorrow, I will finish with a quote from one of the finest philosophers of the 20th century.
'Let's get out there and twat it' Lister, Red Dwarf.
The Other A-H