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Day 12 - Somewhere near Caw Gap (Hadrian’s Wall) to Bellingham

I’m tempted to say, just read yesterday’s entry again to cut down on the repetition.


But if you want more detail…there was more of the R word, torrents of it to be precise, though mercifully there were a couple of 20 mins where it actually stopped - before starting again. But the BOGS! The Pennine Way has been miss sold. It should be renamed the Bog Way. Having got almost everything dry last night, 30 mins after heading north off Hadrian’s Wall at Rapishaw Gap and into the bogs the boots were breached again!

Sycamore-less Gap


So sadly it was another gruelling, dispiriting, discouraging slog. I know I’m near the end - less than 50 miles to go, but I thought about quiting today. Too much, too painful, too wet, too far, too everything.

What stopped me? Pride, yes. Not always a great quality, but useful to call on to help not give in or give up. And well to be honest the alternatives weren’t great. Lie down in a bog in the middle of nowhere where you haven’t seen anyone for 5 hrs and hope to be found in a few days? It was either keep going or never get out of the bogs.


But, I also knew that some of my team from work were planning to come up and see me tonight. That kept me going through the toughest parts of the day somehow. They cooked for me, brought proper towels for the shower (this is a big deal when you’re used to getting dry with a travel towel) food for breakfast and lunch tomorrow and various other bits and pieces. They even got me a camping pod - nice shed with table and chairs and electricity! And best of all a solid roof. I feel so blessed. Thank you. You know who you are and you’re wonderful!


But just like the last mile always feels the longest and hardest of the day, it’s hard to keep right on to the end and not give up when it’s been tough. I know! So many of our young people seem to fall at the last hurdle. They are doing well and have almost achieved something when they give up, slip up, check out. That’s not a criticism. It’s how life is sometimes when you don’t know what reaching the end will actually mean and so don’t have anything to look forward to or people to look forward together with.


My team today, and all your encouragements and messages make a difference. It makes me want to keep going even when it’s hard. You might call that resilience. But resilience is learned through the experience of achieving more than you ever thought possible - not least because folk around you were cheering you on and telling you they believed you could do it.


In2Out’s young people have missed out on so much and often had so much taken away from them. The least we can do is to get behind them and cheer them on, tell them we believe in them, so that one day they might start to believe in themselves. Then the possibilities for what they might achieve will be endless.

 

3 days to go. The final push! And still a long way to go with the fundraising. But I believe we can do it. Together.


Apologies for the lack of and state of the photos when they do exist. My phone has got so wet that it’s refusing to play ball anymore. I think the lens has fogged up. It also no longer recognises my face, which could be the beard, or the camera, or the general look of discomfort on my face.



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8 Comments


Thank God for a bit of pride!

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Nearly there Mark. Come on!! You can finish well, by God’s grace. X

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Keep going mark its been great following your progress and all for a worthy cause soon be home now .

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Mark you are an amazing guy to undertake such an endeavour. I cannot imagine how tough it is. Reading your blogs is an emotional experience, especially when you reflect on the lives of the young guys. God bless you.

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Keep going mark you have enough strength to finish! press on. Life is tough right now but you are tougher. .God bless

You are almost there 🏆

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