You may remember that we were now one team member short, when Allan, my husband felt he could not face the heights. Luckily, in his place, I was able to recruit a colleague from our local quiz team. Steve was raring to go and volunteered to carry Maude.
October 6th, 2018, the big day, dawned wet, cold and miserable. We had been checking the weather forecast all week and were not heartened by the impending rain. At 0845 Steve and I were on the road. With so many layers of clothing stashed in the boot, it looked as if we were going on a polar expedition. We were asking ourselves if we’d made the wrong decision to get out of bed that morning.
A short detour into Shrewsbury ensured that we collected our supporter, Ruby (Chair of SDN). We then settled in to the long journey to Blaenau Ffestiniog, where we would meet the other twenty mad individuals who were taking part. The country around that part of the world is spectacular and the leaves turning red and gold enhanced the scenery.
We got to the centre far too early, so while we waited, we tried the local Welsh cakes with a pot of tea. My mother used to make great Welsh cakes, but I think fear and trepidation heightened our taste buds that day. They were gorgeous.
When everyone had arrived, we took lots of photos. I had brought my digital recorder to ask people why they were doing the challenge before they set out, and to record comments afterwards. The overwhelming sentiment was one of love for Jess and a desire to help her chosen charities.
The following are some of the comments I recorded.
- Vicky from Redditch is a Guide Dog Volunteer. She was at the event to support Jo and Jess. She had Oreo, a Guide Dog Puppy-in-training.
- Tina met Jess a few months ago through Guide Dogs. When she heard Jess was organising the event, she volunteered immediately. Tina was looking forward to doing the zip-wire.
- Alan, Jo’s husband was looking forward to the event. “It should be a laugh, if nothing else”, he said. He felt sure he would want to do it again.
- Ruby, Chair of SDN was supporting Jess’s Gang. She was not able to do it herself but was there for the whole team. She said we were all brave people and that the charities appreciated what was being done today.
- Megan from Ironbridge Bookshop was with her other half, Tom, who was a little bit scared, but was looking forward to the view. They both wanted to do something for Jess and Jo.
- Kevin was looking forward to the excitement.
- Megan was hoping she could keep her eyes open during the descent.
- John was doing it because his wife made him do it.
So, there we all were – keen to start but needing to wait until our time slot. We paced around and took more photos. We all knew we couldn’t back out now and everyone was encouraging everyone else.
Join us for part 3 of this blog to find out what the Zip Wire Challenge was like.