Thursday, 24 May 2012

USA Day 19 - Revisited (19/05/2011)

It was another day on the run across the USA and, with that, another day of waking up to some great fundraising news. While I was sleeping in a very cold Apple Valley, the fund had crept up to £32,914.53. I say "very cold" despite Comedy Jon discovering that the RV actually had a heating system. This seemed to benefit everyone but me as I felt really cold during the night. Upon further investigation, it appeared that my running shoes had been blocking the heating vent in my bedroom. Gutted!

The cold start to the day required 5 layers of clothing. It didn't matter though, as the beautiful scenery really helped take my mind of the cold and any aches and pains that I had. You may notice that I haven't mentioned blisters for a few days now. They were well under control by day 19. The swelling in my feet was greatly reduced too.

I stopped at the 11 mile point to talk to Simon Pryde, John Anderson and Marco Gabbiadini on BBC Newcastle's Total Sport show. I had plenty to talk about and the lads asked some great questions. Soon after that interview I paused for photos in front of a sign of a rather "threatening nature". I'm sure it was just tongue in cheek!

Taking previous advice from Shelli, I was accompanied by Comedy Jon as I approached the Utah/Arizona border just north of Colorado City. Stephen took over driving from Jon at the Merry Wives Cafe. It was aptly named as Colorado City is where the Polygamist community lived. i.e. one husband married to multiple wives.

According to Shelli, the people in this community didn't take kindly to strangers. I always found that Shelli overreacted about most situations. This was certainly one of those occasions and I ran back into Arizona and right past the city without incident. 

As we turned off the main road, after 16 miles of running, Stephen and Kirsty passed us in the RV. Much to both Jon and my horror, Stephen didn't observe any lane discipline and almost crashed the RV into a passing car. It was his first attempt at driving and he was very lucky that it didn't end in disaster.

It was at this point that my GPS watch started beeping at me, stating that it's memory was full. I had to stop for 10 minutes to offload the data to my laptop. 

After a bite to eat, Kirsty (pictured with me below) joined me for the remaining miles. Comedy Jon had found a 20 mile shortcut but unfortunately it wasn't fit for the RV to drive on. 

It started to absolutely chuck it down with rain and Kirsty and I were soon soaked right through. We made it to the 27.1 mile point for the day when the RV arrived having taken a huge detour via Kanab on my original route.

We parked the RV in Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park. The team said that they had a surprise for me. Much to my delight, it turned out to be a barbecue! With Steak! The Support Team had pre-planned this and it was a nice surprise to eat something that wasn't pasta or porridge. 

After dinner, we listened to some of Comedy Jon's very interesting and funny stories. We were in stitches of laughter. Stephen tried to pitch in with one of his own stories, claiming that he was named after the US actor Patrick Duffy. With his full name being Stephen Cook we never managed to work that one out! Fortunately, his pasta making skills were a million times better than his story telling skills!

The one frustrating thing about day 19 was that I had no internet access and was unable to update the blog and tell everyone about the day's happenings. At least it meant that I could get an early night. After a massage from Kirsty of course.