This was the day we as the Angus Active on wheels team had been dreading. That is – with the exception of Tim … Who had signed both me and Vagner up to this unknowingly! And I thought you were meant to be my best friend … Pffttt!
But Tim had pre-empted this, and plied his real best friend Jeremy with alcohol the night before getting him so pie-eyed that he agreed to take Vagners place.
So, bright eyed and bushy tailed (and cursing Tim) we arrived at The Back 2 The Trenches HQ. It was a cold morning and there was frost on the ground as we got ourselves ready!
We diligently pinned our numbers to ourselves. In our naievity we believed the numbers were for the timing of the race, totally forgetting our individual race chips threaded through our trainers.
In actual fact, we soon learned whilst sliding down the tarpaulins or scurrying under barbed wire on our stomachs that the safety pins were just another added torture as they ripped into our fresh before being torn out and cast aside in disgust!
We set off for the first obstacle … A gloopy watery ditch with a steep muddy bank out. Everyone clambered ahead until it finall came to my turn. I was in the midst of making my way out when two large hands were planted on my ample bottom. Now – I know Tim was only trying to help and not cop a feel … But as he pushed my bum, it only had the effect of leaving me pinned helplessly flailing against the muddy bank. Luckily Jermey was nearby and ready to pull me up. I turned to scold Tim, for as you all well know … No one is allowed to come within 3 ft of me. But Tim was standing to one side, whistling and looking at the sky! Hrmmmm Later Mr Downey!
We then grabbed a bag of rubble and carried it around a field before having to climb up and down a muddy woody forest bank. Jeremy, despite his slight frame, was incredibly strong and super fit. So, he was springing around the course calling for Tim and me to hurry and catch up. Whose idea was it to bring him?
The next tough obstacle was a set of poles over a large puddle. The puddle wasn’t deep enough to swim through and the gap between the poles wasn’t large enough to climb through – so we got down on our bellies and hauled ourselves through the mud scuffing our knees on the pebbles below. As we came out the other side both Tim and I spotted a camera so we both smiled cheerfully or so we thought.
Several obstacles later and lots of hills and Tim and I are walking. Tim’s knee had been giving him jip from the day before and as we came to a large hill, it gave way. Tim went into an amazing combat roll over a pile of thistles and only just missed taking both me and Jeremy out at the same time. He did however manage to rip his shorts … And the flesh beneath so it would seem although unsympathetically, Jeremy and I both told him to man up as it was only a little scratch! Oops
As the race came to the end, a lovely lady stood beside an obstacle encouraging everyone over and feeding us jelly beans. The boys had to kneel as she poured them down their throats!
‘Only 1k to go’ she shouted which cheered us up no end! Until of course we saw the frozen pond that we were required to swim across! Now the way I look at this is like having a baby … You know that at the same time tomorrow it will all be over and forgotten. With this in mind, I got in the ice cold water and tried to swim. The cold takes both your ability to breath or swim so you’re simply stationery for the first few seconds as your brain tries to work out how the heck you willingly walked into this!
Emerging from the other side you are now so cold that everything is numb … Tim for some reason was ecstatic … So much so that he hugged both me and Jeremy. Tim never hugs me and the feeling is mutual although I have to say, being so cold, on this day neither Jeremy nor I wanted to let go!
We crossed the line together totally elated and grabbed our medals to wear with a massive sense of accomplishment.
‘Let take photos of how muddy we are before we wash’ said Tim who narrowly missed getting punched in the face!
A hot pie, cafe latte and stiff drink at the pub down the road warmed us all back up and both Jeremy and I were even musing about doing it again.
Thanks for organising Tim!