Monday, 25 April 2011

Here we, here we, here we Flingin’ go!

Last Monday I posted my entry for the Highland Fling, it followed my longest run of the year on the Sunday, 22 miles at a sedate pace on a lovely sunny afternoon. So far this year I’ve only had two 13 mile runs on the WHW, two 16 milers and one 17 mile run on my local routes. I’m not panicking, my muscles have a good memory! Besides I’m not racing, just heading out for a day in my comfort zone with family.

Today I see my name’s on the start list so I’ll start thinking about a "race plan", I’ve never ran either of the half Way races but I’ve never missed a Devil O’ the Highlands and always managed to be some runner’s groupie. Last year I really enjoyed my leg in the Fling relay and supporting all the other runners.

I don’t really care what time I do I’ve got 15 hours to play with and as a Fifer I don’t like to see waste, I may use them all, I’ve just checked my WHW splits for Tyndrum and the fastest I’ve gone through is 13 hours 37 mins. As a rough guide that will do for a goal.

I expect I’ll choke a bit on the dust from all the other girlies and old gits as they thunder off at the 6.00am start, but it would be nice to have bit of encouragement from the rest of the Flingers as you whoosh past me. There were a few memorable words spoken at last years Fling from the Pirate to his lady love, I found them so inspiring I had them printed on a T-shirt along with an Aussie acronym.
Feel free to shout them at me as you go by.

(as modelled by a couple of Scottish Ultras finest)

Saturday, 9 April 2011

“The Ba’s burst fur the big yin!”

"The ba's burst fur the big yin!" Crawford’s words to me when he first felt pains in his legs at the end of January, the GP optimistically thought it could be rheumatism but I think Crawford had a gut feeling, the leukaemia was back. He was admitted to the Queen Margaret on Feb 11th it was confirmed and he was moved to the hospice ward. He had a sense of humour throughout that still had Mum, me and the nurses laughing. He wasn’t eating and was disappearing before our eyes; one of his sons, Andrew arrived from Australia a week ago.

On Monday he looked weary, he had an infection. Tuesday the hospital called Mum, they were concerned about him. We got there at about 11.30am he had deteriorated fast, we stayed by his bedside all day, Andrew went away to inform his aunt and uncle. Pauline arrived in the evening and Andrew came back we were all there at night, Mum was holding his hand, he knew she was there, looking into her eyes, she was reminiscing, the picnic when they forgot the sandwiches, the drive to Arbroath just to buy Smokies, the walks on Aldinga Beach (Oz) His breathing stopped being laboured, the frown on his brow disappeared, listening to my Mum he passed peacefully at 10.30pm.

Yesterday, I spent the afternoon with Mum, again at Queen Margaret, she couldn’t walk, her right leg was excruciating, she couldn’t bare weight on it or walk, with her health history, (terminal cancer) they admitted her, did some tests, bloods, ECG an MRI scan, she asked would she be able to get out for the funeral on Wednesday. My gut instinct was that because she’d spent Tuesday perched on a plastic chair it was “just” nerve/muscular pain. She does have tumours on her spine but the results showed “no change” so they let her go home.

While we were at the hospital waiting for the results, we were in a side room, a lady came in and asked what Mum would like for tea, we weren’t sure if was she staying in or going home? She wasn’t sure, I said have something because if she was staying she wouldn’t get something until I brought it in later, this was her only chance to eat. I was also offered something. If we didn’t eat it, it would go into the waste, ok, we’ll have a baked tattie with tuna then! Mum made me smile. She said “Don’t ever say I don’t take you out for something to eat!” My return was “Anything for an afternoon off work!”

Today we were going through what music we’ll have on Wednesday, Pauline has sorted a Piper, so Highland Cathedral and The Dark Island are definite. Knowing Crawford’s humour we joked about stuff like You cannae shove yer Granny aff a Bus and the Bluebell Polka, (he used to play it on the accordion)

How else should a guy behave if he hasnae seen a Scottish winter in about 40 years!

Crawford was a great guy who made my Mum giggle like a school girl, they had a just a few years together but they were precious.