Sep. 2nd, 2017

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With the evening at an end, I agreed to walk home with L and A. While they went to the loo, I noticed S sitting at one of the picnic tables and went over to check he was OK — for various reasons, he'd had a particular hard day of it. Meanwhile, unknown to me, the girls emerged and shouted over at me, which, as per a classic farce, caught Stuart's attention because he was trying to find Tessa. In the end, they both agreed that they weren't the person the other was looking for and with L feeling tired and a bit stressed, A suggested they just start walking in the right direction.

I meanwhile, was joined by Phil and, a moment later, by Donna as we tried to sort out the stuff that needed to go back to house. As we were getting ready to follow the others, we discovered that Bill and John and Trish were having taxi problems and love nor money couldn't get them a cab before 01:30.

With S expecting to meet his parents for a lift back to Tiverton, we quickly arranged for them change course for the Double Locks, where they could drive those who couldn't walk back into town — on the way to where they were originally going to meet up with S — and then resume the original plan. It all worked flawlessly, with the added bonus that we were able to stash the cake boxes in the car and walk back unhindered. Well, I say unhindered: D was still wearing an extremely elegant dress that basically prevented her from breathing.

After a 20 minute walk, we made it back to the riverside where S got his lift home; I went in to drop off the newlyweds' GoPro, said goodnight to the spaniels and walked another 20 minutes home. It being after midnight, my steps counted against Saturday's total and I found I'd managed 4,000 by the time I got home around 1 a.m. Something tells me I'm going to struggle to get up at dawn for parkrun.
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As per the plan, a group from yesterday's wedding party met up at 08:50 ready for the usual Saturday Riverside parkrun. Sadly, I quickly discovered that neither Jo nor Ceri had made it — not entirely unexpected, given that Jo had been working through a laundry list of excuses the night before. Alice soon filled us in on the details: Tiny Flo, had been taken ill while staying with the grandparents, so J&C had gone over at dawn to take her to the vets and weren't going to be back in time.

We arrived in time for the briefing and after the usual safety announcements, John Caswell, this week's run director, called Phil and Donna forward while we cheered their newly married status. No-one has admitted to tipping them off — both A and I thought about it, but neither of us actually did it — but it was a nice touch, especially with Donna being one of the weekly stalwarts of Riverside.

Talking amongst ourselves beforehand, we agreed that there were no constraints and we were free to set whatever pace we liked. I'd half-planned to do it with the others — P&D were tied together at the wrist! — but when the time came, I got the bit between my teeth and pulled away from the others, finishing in 20:10 and respectable 15th place out of 343. Alan and Cate also split off and finished midway up the field, with the others just sneaking in ahead of the 30 minute pacer.

Afterwards, we met bridesmaids Lucy and Holly (who was pregnant to run) at the finish and agreed to meet up at around 10:00 for breakfast/brunch at the Welcome Cafe. I dropped in on P&D for tea, and, embarrassingly, to ask for a loan, having thought, as per the original schedule, I'd have time to rush home for money & return in time for brunch at 11. This also gave Dasher the opportunity to clamber all over me and give me a good whiff of stinky canal dog, whilst also trying to slurp my ears off the sides of my head. Lovely!

With a few things sorted, we headed back to the cafe and, after some fussing with tables, got ourselves settled. Those who'd been there on Monday ordered almost exactly the same things again — they really were that good — with the new arrivals taking our lead. Partway through, Jo and Ceri arrived to complete the party, bearing the news that Flora was OK but under orders to rest and recoup for a few days.
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What was supposed to be an easy climbing session turned into something a bit more serious when I bumped into Richard. He not only persuaded me to abandon routes in favour of bouldering, but also picked all the boulders so I climbed much harder than normal. Very much to my surprise — I don't feel like I've been on particularly good bouldering form of late — I managed to send almost everything I tried; proof positive that most of my problems are psychological rather than physical or technical...


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