Boys relay route Sept. 21
On one of the best Channel swim days since July, an international 5 person Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team relay just finished, also right at Cap Griz Nez, only minutes after Anna-Carin Nordin, my recent helper on the boat, touched the rocks at the Cap (only the boys had left quite early with Chris Osmond). It is the first boys relay from our international team in 25 years – and the second that ever got inspired to do it, after the first one failed in 1985 due to seasickness, strong winds, 13°C water and night combined! Angikar, who just did a solo on August 8th, had come back to join the team – another “eternal friend” of the Channel it seems!
The day was sunny, with little wind but stronger currents and they felt “suuuper”, they texted!
More details by them later on their blog.
Just briefly – full story to come:
After my successful second Channel swim (non-wetsuit!) on Sept 3rd (16 h 50) – 25 years after my first one –
and some rest we made it from Calais via Brussels to Aachen (arrived Monday, 6th, afternoon) – about 300 km or more biking (some detours) and 2 marathons and are safe and happy back home in Heidelberg. It was easier than expected (or feared) but took a bit longer for several reasons. A great event, though, and a great training experience for the final big one before my 60th birthday, hopefully!
Here some impressions:
with Mareike at Oye-Plage past Calais on the way to Gravelines
Hondschoote near the Belgian border
at the Peace Tree in the Leopolds Park at the European Parliament in Brussels
Start of the 85 run behind Tienen, 60 km behind Brussels, after about 3 hours of rest
First marathon done! I cannot believe how easy it feels!
Run-walking into Vaals
End of Vaals Netherlands - beginning of Germany!
I had not intended to carry the World Harmony Run torch all the way through the city to the Europe Square (Europaplatz), but my friends made me
"Dead" between the "WELCOME" flowers at Europaplatz
The last leg: driving back to Heidelberg
Collateral damage (without the blisters the whole thing would have felt unreal - too easy, no other pain at all!)
Many thanks are also going to my friends at the WAVES Restaurant in Heidelberg for their superb vegetarian food, and to Europcar Heidelberg, Mr. Plitzko, wo was extremely helpful again in providing us with a support van.
‘The fullness of life lies in dreaming and manifesting the impossible dreams.” – Sri Chinmoy
Fotos of the swim
Link to all reports of September 2010
THANK YOU EVERYONE FOR ALL YOUR GOOD WISHES, ENCOURAGEMENT, PRAYERS AND CONGRATULATIONS!
Approaching Cap Griz Nez
We made it in 16 hours 50 min 58 min – thanks to Eddie, my amazing pilot and crew and Ann-Carin, super-enthusiastic, competent and positive helper!
Landed right on the Cap in the dark, felt like sacred Channel swimmers ground! Was not sure till the last half hour whether currents would not have us do a couple of more hours and whether I would be able to make it qt all. But I felt strong till the end, the water was almost warm towards France, and air temps were up during the day and even the early night in France was balmy (last nigh had been freezing I believe).
Now hot bath, some sleep and on….
Here some more photos of the big day – the weather gods were definitely with us!: Photo-Gallery (you can choose slide show mode on the left)
Rising morning sun
Into the first shipping lane -from the water I actually did not see that many ships
- France visible in the back!
Getting closer by the hour – but will we make it?
The German flag is flying at the Ridge – yeah! Thanks Evelyn and Dave!
Start just changed: 3 a.m. on the boat, 3:30 off.
The tracker of our boat is No 3, Anastasia, where you can follow our route on Friday, start 4:30 a.m. Dover time (5:30 continental)
Right now I am fighting a slight fever from a very cold caravan night with Aspirin, ginger tea, Vit. C and rest. Hoping to get fit again in time. Prayers welcome!
We decided the van for the biking will only leave Heidelberg IF and When I have touched French ground.
“Do the best you can, cheerfully, accept the worst calmly ….” (by Sri Chinmoy)
“Be courageous, be determined, be self-giving – the goal will be yours!” (inofficial quote by Sri Chinmoy)
France so close
Finally the weather has calmed down. Since Monday there has been one successful swim after the other. The mornings are glorious up here at the Ridge, and at night France is glittering in the distance under a star-strewn clear sky. The flags are flying again at the Ridge, after a long time of horrible weather (hoisted for every successful swimmer staying here).
We are leaving Friday morning for sure. France is waiting! Mentally I am already on the bike and run. (Even if I did not make the swim I decided to continue this time, if only for training reasons.) But everythings is looking great, the water is at it’s warmest now and the sun should be out during the day. Nights are chilly, but then we will start around 4:30 a.m. Dover time, swim mainly during the day and hopefully land in the evening – and the water will feel only warmer for it.
One great last minute helper has emerged – a fast Swedish swimmer who will swim in 3 weeks’ time and is eager to get some experience on the boat and may even want to join me in the water for some time (she could pace a me a bit towards the end). The helpers I had hoped for had to cancel unfortunately.
Flags are flying at the Ridge again - foto session with one of the swimmers
So down to last minute preparations, bit of shopping, lots of rest, good food and tapering. Enjoyable simple life. But I am eager to finally get it done and then move on to something else!!!