Just an update on my status!
Left Perth Monday morning 1am and after not much sleep for the past 48hrs I arrived in London Monday avo, a little sore and grumpy :p A couple of hours later dragging 6 months of luggage including a bike through the airport to Paddington station I was greeted by my live version of the Paddington bear … Geoff Wilson! What a pleasant greeting, until he saw my luggage!!
What took him 5 minutes from his hotel to meet me at the station took 20 minutes return with my 50kgs luggage?! Geoff warned me he was a little cramped in his hotel room so booked me the penthouse room on the top story 5 flights of stairs up!
When I squeezed through the entrance with my luggage and learnt the lift was not working it was the stairs we climbed. 30 minutes later in a sweat we had carted my luggage up to the grand room 3x2m?? I was hoping this was just a false impression of London J Needless to say I was happy to ride my luggage down those stairs the next morning and hop back on my train this time to Dover! Did I mention the endless clear skies?? Haha probably not cos I didn’t see one, just clouds and rain. A classic reality check was when Geoff and I paused for a breath whilst carrying our luggage to hotel in the rain, when some lady pulled up alongside on the road and asked Geoff if he would go to her boot and get her umbrella !! She offered us an umbrella too but I was happy to just watch and laugh
So what seemed an eternity of travel and checking in / out we arrived at Folkestone station and caught a cab to Varne Ridge Caravan Park. I’d hate to say but the caravan is 3 times as big as my last room, though we are also a little crowded in here with 3-5 people in a 2 bedroom caravan. We didn’t quite make it past the driveway before Evelyn and Dave (the owners) welcomed and lead us to our base for the next 10 days! There were swimmers arriving from everywhere, mostly from Perth – a 12 membered school team from Churchlands high school and other fellow solo swimmers including Stan the Man a 72yo channel veteran going for his 5th attempt of the channel!
So it’s a little swimmers village here and there is some amazing support and inspiration surrounding us. Their office walls are plaqued with all their channel swimmers names including our very own Peter Tanham and Mark Scanlon.
I met my skipper yesterday morning, Ray Cooper. He’s no Raymondo but a great and funny character Im sure my support crew will be well looked after! Due to the lack of good weather in the past 10 days he has yet to take his first swimmer for this week. He needs a slightly larger window for this guy as he’s going for a 20plus hr swim, after falling short 1mile last year in 21hrs! I assured him I would be 10 foot under if I was still in the water for 20 hrs. So assuming the weather holds up I am due to swim either Monday or Tuesday morning, as planned. So I have a few days up my sleeve to acclimatize and get some well needed sleep
I have been for 2x 30min swims in the harbor and will try an hr today. I was expecting/praying for it to be a little warmer, it is currently 15.2 degrees in the harbor and after 30mins I was a little on the purple/numb/shivery side … Maybe it’s best not to test those waters anymore haha. I did however meet Chloe yesterday morning, the superfish from Sydney attempting a triple crossing sometime in the next week. She was cruising the harbor for a 3hr recovery swim
Anyway, I will post another update hopefully on Sunday when I get confirmation to swim Monday or Tuesday? Until then, it’s eat and sleep and a little swim. And eat some more … I CANT WAIT TO STOP EATING!!!