• Day Sixteen

    It was a glorious morning today and I still haven't got tired of opening the curtains and seeing the beautiful Salisbury Crag in front of me, what a wonderful way to start the day.

    Edd and I decided to leave a little earlier this morning so I could have quick stretch after my walk to the Palace, but before my run; now this may be a bit ground-breaking for some of you, but I've discovered that stretching tight muscles actually helps loosen them off. You're welcome! And with slightly looser muscles I didn't have my usual painful shuffle up the first mile. I really am starting to get the hang of this thing.

    This is probably just as well as I was met by lots of runners at 7am today. Jeremy was the first to arrive, followed by Chris, Dominic and Florence. After a while we were also joined by Grant and Leah. So at one point there were 7 of us trotting up and down the Mile, and I loved it! Everyone took turns to run with different people, so eventually we had all chatted to one another and exchanged stories whilst ticking off the miles. Florence later tweeted about the runners being joyful and that's how it felt to me too. I felt honoured to be part of this experience, where people who wouldn't otherwise have met had the chance to share some time together in a non-pressurised way; everyone was open and generous and contributed to the experience in their own way.

    After a while work commitments began to pull people away until it was just myself, Jeremy and Florence running. Florence is performing in Edinburgh too (http://florenceminder.com/). We talked about her work, which looks at language and mourning (if you have the chance go and see her - if her work is as thoughtful and considered as she is then I'm sure you won't regret it); the Edinburgh experience; running ...

    Sorry I just disappeared for a little nap but I'm back now.

    Jeremy was fab today. He has two daughters who he is obviously really proud of and they seem to have a great relationship. They come up to The Fringe for a long weekend each year and see and do as much as they can. Jeremy said that he thought I was inspiring but, actually I thought he was pretty inspiring too. He has his own company, is studying for an MA, clearly loves his wife and daughters and has an appreciation for life that was infectious.

    I know I've said it already but Chris, Leah, Grant, Dominic, Florence and Jeremy were all so generous and kind; I really enjoyed running on the Mile with them and today felt special.

    Later on Dot Howard came back for more! She has had some great reviews (and well deserved too) for her show (http://makingentrances.com/) and Abby came back to run another mile with us too.

    After they left I was running on my own for a while, but I had already covered the bulk of the miles and in particular I had got past the tricky middle section. This is where my body likes to have a little moan and I start to feel a little tired. Once I get to about 16 miles though things settle down. My body knows it can run 10 miles as this is the distance that I normally run at home each day. The Mile is also pretty busy by now so there is lots going on to distract me. I was joined at the 18 mile mark by James from Bootworks Theatre (www.bootworkstheatre.co.uk) James has contacted me on Twitter so it was great to meet him and hear about some of the work he has done, including climbing to space. We chatted a bit about journeys that don't go anywhere, which is one of the important elements of the marathons on the Mile.

    The Mile was really beautiful today, the sun was shining and the buildings looked glorious. A lot of people were smiling and people felt happy. I got some more fudge from the fudge kitchen and Edd was given some more coffee by the lovely people in The Scottish Story-Telling Centre. I also saw a friend from home and she gave me some delicious macaroons. I'm going to have them in a minute with a cup of tea :)

    At the risk of getting ever more sentimental this experience has reminded me that people can be kind to one another. I had wondered if there was any 'Dunkirk spirit' left for people of my generation and I now feel like it is present in abundance. Of course people sometimes get grumpy and snap at complete strangers or loved ones, of course people aren't always smiling and feeling eternally positive, but it's good to know that when someone asks for help there are some people around to hear them.

    1 Comment

    • 1. Aug 25 2013 5:50PM by Heather

      Hi Vicki, you mentioned the Dunkirk spirit when we ran and chatted this morning. Not perhaps in those words, but about how this experience has unlocked lots of good, positive, kind thoughts, attitudes and behaviours in people you encounter. This in itself is utter justification for the project you are doing (I read a couple of comments on the Edinburgh Evening News article about you that made me a little bit annoyed because people were saying the £7000 that is allowing you to do this work was not put to good use. Poppycock I say!) So keep up the good work, and if you want moments of mushy, slushy, grateful sentimentality, go right ahead. :)

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