Day 28- 6 Feb 2015 – Travelled from Hassan to Bellur Cross
Distance – 42km – Cumulative total 1176km
My name is Chris and I’m Walking 1,260km from Mumbai to Bangalore to raise money for widows in India. I’m walking 30 Marathons in 30 Days and I will be writing a blog post every day. To follow my progress you can sign up to receive updates here. To read my previous blog posts click here. To make a donation please visit this page. Thanks for reading and please leave me a comment as they really do give me a lift when I read them every morning.
I managed to convince Ed to write a guest blog so I will be handing over to him. You should get the Day 29 blog tomorrow morning UK time and I will produce one more blog for my final day which you will receive later on in the day.
Guest blogger number 4 here. As promised in yesterday’s blog I, Ed Parsons, son of Chris ‘the walker’ Parsons have been handed the laptop to give insight into 30×30. Before I start I just want to say ‘walking is what we do’ not writing blogs but here goes.
My journey into India started off on the 24th January 2015. It was like any other winters day in Exeter. I was cycling to my 9am lecture when buzz buzz goes my phone (I pull over) and answer. It was Sam, my eldest brother, – although we speak on facebook fairly regularly a call was unusual so I was interested in what he had to say. It turns out he was calling to ask what I was up to in the next week or so and whether I wanted to go to India to walk with Dad. So it was set. Me and Sam were going to India. Unfortunately Sam doesn’t follow through with his promises and realised he couldn’t handle any marathons so he bailed on Dad. It was left to me to provide the support for Dad from the Parsons boys. This is loosely based on the truth – unfortunately with the timing of getting visas Sam was no longer able to get time off from his Uni studies – I guess summing up the difference between a first year sport science degree and 5th year medicine degree.
At this point I must give lots of thanks to everyone who helped get the visa to me so quickly including the self-called ‘tangoed dwarf’ who handed over my passport to me at the airport.
On the plane I was inadvertently being acclimatised on the food front. Dinner I was told was a choice between lamb, chicken or an Indian vegetarian curry. Those who know me would know I would always choose the first two with the latter as a last resort. By the time the food got to me the last resort became just that and so I was left picking at a very unappetising vegetarian curry, not the best start but I ate the rice and settled down for the night being assured by the very apologetic air hostess that I would get my first choice at breakfast. The midweek flight to Bangalore turns out to not be too popular and so there were many free seats at the back – so I slept across three seats. An hour before landing I was awoken by the air hostess saying we were an hour from Bangalore and breakfast was being served. She then muttered the words I didn’t want to hear – “Sorry sir, all we have left is the Indian vegetarian option the passengers at the front had first pick as some missed out on their first choice during dinner service.”
So safe to say I landed in Bangalore very hungry but as I was soon to be with Dad the excitement was pulling me through. I got a taxi from the airport, thanks to the kind Kumar and his friends. A quick word of advice at this point. If you are ever asked by a driver if you like music the answer should be no as I found the opposite response resulting in Bollywood dance music being played at full blast for the remaining 5 hour journey with me trying to catch some much needed z’s before joining Dad for the best part of 5 marathons.
So now onto my views of the walk itself.
Where else to start than the infamous ‘code reds’. I am sure the sole reason for the code reds are just an extra break – so when Dad has told you he does 6km stints, he actually walks for 3km (on a good day) then takes a seat on his portable commode.
For those of you are missing Dad’s usual format I will use his ‘picture this’ scene format, which I feel sums up the amazing team perfectly. Sachin crouched down massaging Vaseline between Dad’s sweaty toes, Atul stirring his second chai of the day in one hand – on the phone booking our final accommodation with the other, and Dad leaning against the crouched down Vijay as he couldn’t possibly sit up on his own. At this point he turns to me and says “I just wish this was over – and I was anywhere but here.” Don’t think you’re getting this treatment at home Dad.
However, saying all that, walking down NH 75 today (NH 17’s slightly more forgiving younger brother) on what was effectively my 3rd day staring up the hill at the long road ahead I put myself in Dad’s shoes and thought to myself could I have had the mental and physical strength to walk 27 more like Dad has done? Probably not but we just focus on the next 5km.
Finally I am going to use Dad’s celebrity blogging status to give a few special ‘shout-outs. First of all Sachin, as he has become my ‘food man’. For lunch and dinner he has the unenviable task of getting food that meets my quite specific requirements. As you will hopefully see from the photo he did an incredible job on the vegetable front tonight as I had enough vegetables to keep me going for the few months. Secondly, Atul’s patience and support is quite amazing. Dad is incredibly lucky to have them both looking after him. Finally, I want to say hi to John and Mary, a lovely couple I sat next to on the plane over. I hope your trip in and around the spice fields of Bangalore is going well.
Love to you all and thankfully back to Dad tomorrow
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Some jackfruit we spotted during one of our breaks
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— Kristin A. Meekhof (@KristinMeekhof) February 7, 2015