Monday, 18 May 2009

No Guarentees!

So, am back after the big 3 peak challenge! Despite me saying that I would get up and down all three mountains despite my toe injury I'm afriad I only managed Ben Nevis and 3/4 of Scafell.

I flew up to Glasgow Wednesday morning and worked from our local C&W office. We picked up the mini-bus with the rest of the team aprox 7pm at Glasgow airport and headed up to Ben Nevis. The drive up to Ben Nevis was amazing - great views around Loch Lomond, very beautifull and will definetly go back in more relaxing circumstances! We arrived at our bunk house around 10pm and had a quick bite to eat and couple of drinks before heading to sleep in the lovely bunk beds (The Lowry it was not!).
As we were not starting until 5pm on the Thursday we spent the day in Fort William, grabbing a deluxe Morrisons breakfast first thing and then sat in the park enjoying the sunshine (yep it was very very sunny and I think I may be the first person to get burnt by the Scottish sun!).
5pm we all began the decent up Ben Nevis.

The views on the walk up where amazing

It took me three hours to get to the top of Ben Nevis - as we neared the summit there was a lot of snow every step forward I slipped back 2 which was very frustrating!
Myself and two others reached the top first, we waited for about 20mins for some of our party to catch up with us but we got so cold we started heading back down. We met up with 2 other crew members a short distance from the top and they continued on as we headed down.

Coming back down was really painfull on my toe - every step forward my toe was hitting the end of my walking boots which was far from pleasant! And as we hit the rocky parts I knocked my toe quite a few times. It therefore took me nearly as long to get down Ben Nevis as it took to get up!

Getting to the bottom was very emotional, but also very proud! There where a few points where I thought I wouldn't be able to do it!

Once at the bottom it became apparent that one of the guys we had passed near the top was in trouble. He had injured his knee and could barely walk, luckily another member of the team was with him but was having to half carry him most of the way down. One of the drivers started to make his way up to give them some assistance. Luckily all where safely down but it took another hour and a half so we were quite behind time as we set off for Scafell.

I managed to sleep really well on the drive to Scafell and kept my foot raised hoping that the swelling would go down by the time we arrived.
We got to Scafell at aprox 8am. This time just 6 of us headed up. Scafell is a much shorted climb that Ben Nevis but its a harder climb as steeper. Unfortunatly the weather was not on our side as it had been when climbing Ben Nevis. The weather was awful, raining and very windy.

The stones were very slippery walking up and it soon became apparent that this was not just down to the rain. There were lots of National Trust workers replacing a lot of the path - apparently when the path was originally laid the stones were put in the wrong way up which is causing the stones to be more slippy. The path up Scafell was also very narrow and with the wind there were times I thought I was going to be blown off the side (even a sturdy girl like me!!).

When we were aprox 3/4 of the way up I decided that I couldn't continue - the wind and narrow path was making me feel unsafe and I was really worried about the climb down with my toe. So myself and 2 of the team headed back down and 3 others carried on - although they also turned back shortly after due to the conditions etc.

It didnt take too long to get down and luckily I had the shoulder of a team member to help me down and managed to not knock my toe as often as the way down Ben Nevis.

Once we were all down and back loaded into the mini-bus we set off for Snowdon. I knew that I wouldn't be able to climb this one. My toe was described as a beacon of red light that the guys could use to guide them down Snowdon later on! We arrived at Snowdon at 5pm - so therefore would not be hitting the 24 hr deadline.

3 of the team headed up. The conditions here were also bad. The cloud level was very low and it was raining. There were a lot of pen aople hanging around waiting for people to get back down - one group had gone up at 9am that morning and were still not back!

I think it was aprox 10:30 when our three got down to the bottom and we packed up again and headed for home.

Getting home and sleeping in my own bed was bliss! Waking up Saturday morning I realised that I need to take myself to A&E to have my toe checked out as it was not looking pretty (photo at the end of this blog, its gross - u have been warned!). My friend Paul drove me across to Wexham and I joined the queue to see a doctor.

The doctor took me straight into theatre and anaethatised the toe (which fyi injections into your big toe really hurts - I guess because toes are quite bony with not much flesh), it took 3 injections to numb my toe up. She then pierced the nail to release the blood trapped underneath - gross but a relief at the same time. Luckily she managed to save the nail but it wouldn't be looking good for a few weeks so it looks like no sandals/flip-flops for me this summer!

So I would like to say a massive thank-you to everyone that sponsored me with this challange - and also apologise for not completing all of it. I am going to return to all peaks and do them again - but rather than rush it over a 24 hour period I am going to do it over a weekend and enjoy the climbing and the views.

The famous toe, pre and post treatment:-

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

3 Peaks and the god damn hoover!

So tomorrow is the day when myself and the 3 Peaks team travel up to Scotland ready to begin the 3 Peaks challenge this Thursday at 5pm. Cast your minds back to the last fundraising initiative I had - the Dorney Lake 10K........... And you will remember how I stupidly twisted my ankle in my heels the evening before the race.

No, no, I haven't done anything that silly this time. However, have been doing a little spring cleaner in the house this evening (cleaning therapy is my bizarre 'Monica' tendency as my friends like to (affectionately!) refer to). Anyway, whilst carrying it down stairs I have managed to drop the big lump of a thing on my big toe - D'Oh!!

Its very sore and looks like it will be nice and black ready for the decent up Ben Nevis!

Ow well, I guess I am not happy with just a 'normal' challenge, I have to add an injury factor into the mix as well.

Anyway, whatever the bruised toe, weather, conditions etc bring I guarantee that I will be up and down all 3 of those mountains as whenever I feel like stopping I will think of my big brave man and keep one foot marching in front of the other. Either that of hop on the back of one of my team mates!!!

Sammie x

Saturday, 9 May 2009


You're going to make them. A mistake is the best way to learn.

Learning is our goal. We want to learn fast and big. Therefore we want to make lots of mistakes and big ones.

Answer: Don't make the same mistake twice!

Richard Wildman

Dancing by Richard Wildman

Most people are rubbish dancers. Very few are good. Main problem and what makes the worst dancer is the worry that other people think that they can't dance. Kettle calling the pot!

Be bold. Get out there. Like any skill you get better with practice (or think you get better with beer!)

Plus sides - If really crap then you get to meet people who comment, you got to get better and you get to learn about walking your own path and ignoring people with nothing useful to tell you. You learn to be bolder.

Or find someone truly awful and dance next to them!!

Richard Wildman

Being Ready by Richard Wildman

You never are quite ready. If you are then it is too late!

Feeling ready to ask out the girl you've been obsessing over for weeks, feeling ready to apply for the job that looks harder than you can comfortably do, etc.

A window of opportunity opens and then it closes. Gone. Often forever. Thats a long time!

When it opens, it may seem to be the wrong time. You may shrug and say "Oh well". Dont. Its not the wrong time. Jump! Why?

1) Its never the right time........ever. There is always something you can use as to convince yourself of that (sometimes pretty good sounding ones too). Ignore them all!

2) Life expects you to stand up and do things before you think you're ready. Its a test.

3) You're always so much better than you dare to think

Richard Wildman

Decisions by Richard Wildman

The sign of confidence, of leadership and also a very attractive male quality (or so I am told) is being decisive.

"Ooh I dont know what do you want to do?" Can be a great second date self destruct option for the wuss man!

Just like confidence, decisiveness can be tricky. But as with anything that looks to be difficult there is always a simple (but imperfect, (but hey, life is way too short for perfectionism, sorry but it is look at 80/20)) answer. Here is what happens:-

Choice 1 see-saw- Pro/con- = Forever dither
------------> ^ ^
Choice 2 ----- -----

Rule: If you cant decide in X then pick option 1

You'll soon know if its the right decision - this is not about flip flopping but being able to change a decision


I found this in a notebook of Richard's. The diagram is not posting correctly - its basically 2 choices then arrow to a circle of see/saw decisions and circle of pro/cons which equates to forever dithering! I think Rich would want me to share his words of wisdom with you all!

Friday, 8 May 2009

3 Peaks & a Gr8 Company!

As you all are probably aware myself and my friends are doing as much as possible to raise money for charities in Richard's name.

The next challenge is the 3 peaks - Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon in 24hrs! I am completing this with a number of my work colleagues. As it has not been that long since the 10K run I did not want to broadcast an email to everyone again asking for more sponsorship so thought I would put a note on here to do it in a more subtle way!

We start at 5pm on Thursday May 14th - and fingers crossed will complete by 5pm on the 15th.

So if you fancy sponsoring myself and the team taking on this challenge then logon to

We dropped a note to our exec team at the company I work for (Cable&Wireless) and they have generously donated £1000. Our total to date is now over £4000 for Lymphoma Research and we also have collected money for Lymphoma Org and Make-A-Wish foundation. Our grand total is over £5000. However! It cant stop there so if you are feeling generous then please dig deep! (I promise not to twist my ankle the night before this one!!)


Monday, 4 May 2009

Nanny D

As you will know from a previous post I lost my Granddad a few weeks ago and I have sadly now also lost my Nan. My Nan passed away a couple of days after Granddad's funeral, she had been poorly for some time so whilst it was not a complete shock it is still terribly sad.

My Nan was such a great character and I have such great memories from spending lots of time with her when I was a little girl. My favourite memories are from the holidays we use to take in Lanzarote, I remember me and Julie being embarrassed as Mum and Nan would always sunbathe topless! But being even more amused when she would have a dip in the sea with her incredible floating boobs!

She also use to make the best pickled onions - boxing day dinners will never be the same without them.

I take a lot of comfort in the fact that whilst we may not be able to see my Nan she is re-united with my Granddad who she had loved dearly for so many wonderful years - something they were very blessed to have.

God bless Nan and give Granddad a kiss from me x x