Juneathon 2017, Day 26 – An Accidental walk

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The bat

The Old Trout asked me to make her a bat.
It may be nearly a month late, but I have made it.

The bat is part of a geocache that’s she’s making up in Yorkshire. I’ve already made a few bats before for a cache that my sister and I maintain down in South Wales. I’m getting good at making bats. Or at least I was, until the Ebay supplier of MDF bat shapes stopped selling them. This bat is the first I’ve made with Fimo ( a plastic clay that bakes in a normal oven).  But I think it’s turned out well enough, so off to England it is going.

And here is where the “accidental” walk comes in. I set off to the Post Office with my bat filled parcel in hand, expecting to only be out 5 minutes. Instead, when I reached the counter there was a large scrappy cardboard sign saying “Post Office Closed”. Apparently the Post Office would be closed for the next 15 minutes because the Post Mistress was having a cigarette break.

Well, that was all fine and dandy, but what was I to do? There I was, with my “outside clothes” on. You know, the ones that are good enough to head to your local Post Office a couple of streets away, but not ones you’d head to town in. Did I want to walk back home, sit down in my outdoor clothes and then return? I certainly couldn’t stand around waiting for 15 minutes (No, I’m not entirely certain why not either) and I couldn’t walk to the main Post Office in the city center because of said clothes. Instead I thought I’d walk to the beach and back.

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The tide was out

I arrived at the beach, realising that in order to do that I had to cross Swansea’s main thoroughfare. The one that was at a standstill with everyone staring out of their cars, utterly bored. And there’s me, in my less than great outside clothes.
Good job I don’t really care. It was something that crossed my mind, but briefly,  I rather like wandering about in my crocodile crop top, “Pow” tunic top and purple shorts, so at least it gave them a erm… shall we say “visual spectacle” to ease the monotony.

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Trying to get a more unusual photo

It was really hot today. And just a little stifling. Which is why, when I’d reached the beach and spotted the nearby cafe my priorities changed completely and I went in search of an ice-cream.

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Delicious

Look at that: heaven on a stick!

And then it was time to wander back to post my bat. But to ensure I didn’t get too boring on this rather accidentally, chaotic day (Oh, if only all chaos was as pleasant) I returned a different way, via Victoria Park. The flowers look stunning at the moment. It’s amazing how many different varieties are packed into such a relatively small space.

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I posted the bat. And I had hoped to do a little bit of extra exercise today to compliment the walk, but time has run away with me. So, that’s all for today.

An Accidental walk day: Walk to the 360 center and back
Steps Taken: 5,458
Difficulty Level: Easy

Janathon 2017, Day 25 – Pool night



I’ve completed my daily step goal and my Janathon exercise by walking to the pub and back. If it hadn’t have been for Janathon I wouldn’t have bothered as I’m bunged up with a cold. I also couldn’t drink because I’ve got a hospital appointment early tomorrow.

At the moment I hate Janathon. I just want it to be over.
At the same time I realise that I’ve got up and done more exercise because of it.

I think I just hate my life at the moment. There’s really no reason to bother doing anything. I wake up, I feel tired. I try to do something. I just feel exhausted all the time. I know it’s depression hitting me full force in the face. It’s so much worse at this time of year. But there really isn’t any reason for me to be here. (No, I’m not about to try to commit suicide. So don’t worry). I’m no use to anyone and I’m stuck inside this body, this house…  I’m so worthless. I want so much to have a life that means something. But I’m just stuck here alone.

Forgive me, I’m in a bit of a rut.
I’ll try to write something more upbeat tomorrow.

Oh, and I accidentally wore the wrong leggings to the pub. That didn’t help. They were a pair I made a while ago. Forthwith they shall be called “the-leggings-that-fall-down”. After walking roughly 50m I have to keep yanking the flipping things up. Why? Because I accidentally made them with too small a backside. And trust me, that shouldn’t have been an issue because there’s not that much junk in this here trunk. And I tried to fix it by adding extra material. That fabric somehow, inexplicably, got added to the front instead of the back. So, these leggings are a patchwork mess that still fall down.
And why did you need to know that?
1. You didn’t really.
2. I would have walked home the long way today had it not been for my misbehaving legwear.

Pool Night: Walk to pub and back
Steps Taken: 5,087
Difficulty level: medium

Janathon 2017, Day 23 -Actual geocache maintenance

My family and I own and maintain over 200 geocaches.
We’re the type of people who want you to enjoy what you find. So our caches are generally not ones that have been set out and left to rot in the woods for years. I say generally because the best laid plans of mice and men … well they gang aft agly. There are a few that were put out with the best of intentions, but have been extremely difficult to get to. One of the various problems we’ve faced is that my mobility has deteriorated badly in the last few years, making places that I could walk to easily four or five years ago very difficult now.

So, we try our best, but it isn’t always as good as we’d have liked. Roughly a fortnight ago someone let us know that they’d lost the lid from one of our caches. Running repairs were made, but it was obvious that the cache container needed to be replaced. And I’ve been trying to get there ever since. If you’ve read any of my other blog posts you’ll know that this is because I’ve either been too tired, or anxious, or agoraphobic or any one of countless other naff reasons to walk to the bus and then to the cache. But, today I made it.

And so, today’s Janathon exercise entailed walking to the bus, then along the sea front (yes, the Front – that nice, flat tarmaced path that I saunter along regularly) to the cache. Roughly 1.5 miles.

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Dusk

I actually checked on three caches today. But of course, I didn’t have the sense to take photos of any of them. So those of you that are still at a loss as to what this malarky is all about, well you’ll not have much of a clue so I’ll try to paint the best picture that I can: Flat tarmaced cycle track at dusk. Lots of cyclists, Lots of runners, plus yours truly. I walk along (complete with flashing headtorch) trying to work out which tree the first cache is hidden beneath. This is normally okay in the daylight. I’ve been there loads of times before, so I know that I’m looking for an “inny bit” just before a tree. It doesn’t take me long and I’ve spotted the “inny bit”. Nope. Wrong one… try again…. that one led me over on to the beach. Hmm…

The thing to remember is that yours truly is never actually lost, she just looks it. Oh, and confused. I just do my best to brave it out and pretend that what I’m doing is utterly normal. Yes, I’ve just appeared from the bushes swearing. Yes, I’ve just headed back into different bushes with a squeal of delight. All normal, quite normal.

The first cache was finally found and checked.
The second cache took longer to find and involved lying down in the undergrowth, in the dark, praying that nobody could spot my boots from the path and stopped to ask if I was okay.
But the third, the one I went to replace, that’s a blighter. I’m surprised that no one’s lost the lid before. The cache itself is right on the sea front, attached to a tree 10m up from the beach. To reach it, you have to scrabble down 3m and then search the tree. Whilst I merrily clung on to the tree for dear life I exchanged the film pots and took a photo (as you do).

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Looking towards Mumbles

And then, job done I headed to the nearest bus stop. I couldn’t have asked for better weather. But perhaps next time I might be able to force myself to head out in daylight.
Here’s hoping.

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Looking towards Swansea City Center

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Time to go home

Actual Geocache Maintenance Day: 1.5 mile walk
Steps Taken: 6,774
Difficulty Level: Easy

Janathon 2017, Day 8 – Tools of the trade

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As I awoke bright eyed and bushy tailed at around 8am this morning I thought that it would be the perfect day for a walk. Full of optimistic thoughts I also decided to weigh myself. That was a bad decision. So bad that I’m not even going to admit how bad it was.
After that I decided that I wasn’t feeling quite so good after all and headed back to bed for a erm, power nap.

Four hours later I emerged again, ready to tackle the world. As long as that didn’t involve going outside and seeing anyone…

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Here’s a another picture of the monitor of my recumbent bike. Proof that not only did I complete 30 minutes of exercise for Janathon today, but that I was rather worn out and wobbly by the end of it too.

And this was my first day using the bike without the arms in the way. It was certainly easier getting on and off without them. Although I still wouldn’t describe it as “hopping”.

What I really can’t understand is where all of my allen keys have gone. Every time I get a flat-packed item of furniture I’m pretty certain that I’ve kept the allen key safe just in case. But when I rummaged around in my toolbox earlier I could only find two tiddly ones that weren’t ever going to work on the large hex headed screws that held the arms in place. So, I put my noggin to work, (tried to forget about the missing allen keys that seem to have packed their bags and left me) and found an alternative.

The 28mm drill bit I tried first wouldn’t work; its hexagonal end was too large. But I hit gold with the 13mm bit. And yes, I felt extremely stupid undoing bolts with a drill bit. That’s why there’s a picture of it. But it got the job done; which meant that I got today’s Janathon exercise done.

Tools of the trade day: 30 minutes on recumbent bike
Steps taken: 3,601
Difficulty level: easy

Janathon 2017, Day 5 – Dancercise!

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I could not get going today.
Every time I awoke, my head started having a go at me and I decided that heading back to sleep was a better option.

So, it took until roughly 8pm before I finally emerged from bed and I still felt really ill mentally. With just over 500 steps clocked for the day at that point I couldn’t see any exercise being completed, let alone getting out of the house for some fresh air.

But, first things first: I had to put the bins out. That required a fair bit of mental effort (and a phone call to the Old Trout, who as always helped no end by guiding me through every step. Although as she lives 300 miles away and hasn’t really got a clue what I’m doing on the other end of the phone, those steps can often be a little misplaced.) But, once that was done I realised that I’d technically got out of the house for the 5th day in a row.

And I gradually started to feel better. By 10pm I’d decided to do some dancercise. 1 song perhaps if I could manage it.
I actually managed a whole 20 minutes! My body now feels similar to what I’d imagine a sore, sloppy jellyfish to feel like, but one with a huge smile on its face. (yes, I know, that analogy crumbled a bit at the end, but I’m a Janathoner, not a writer 😉 )

Dancercise day: 20 minutes of dancing (flailing about) to Linkin Park
Steps Taken: 4,224
Difficulty Level: Medium

Dog Rose

Juneathon 2015, Day 17 – Walking and Swimming

You may have gathered by now that walking any sort of distance is quite hard for me. What you may not have gathered, is that I loathe shopping. I’ve never particularly enjoyed the activity, but now that I’m unable to stand for very long, or walk very fast, I hate it.
One thing I really can’t understand is why people seem so unable to see the 23 stone woman with a stick hobbling towards them. Am I really invisible? Or have they not grasped the fundamental nature of physics that dictates that if there is a solid 23 stone object in front of you, the likelihood is that they are not going to be able to walk straight through it?!
(And no, I don’t intentionally get in peoples’ way.) (well, not often.)

Where was I?
Oh, yes: We had to go food shopping. So I walked miserably around a massive Tescos.

And then the old Trout cheered me up by saying that we could go geocaching.
🙂

A few “cache and dashes” later (geocaches that are close to the road) and the exercise for Day 17 of Juneathon was nearly complete. But as I said yesterday: if there be water, there do be a fair chance of me jumping in. So, after a short spell of sunbathing I was back in the lagoon. This time I swam “the bridge loop”.

The Bridge loop

The Bridge Loop

Walking and Swimming Day: Tescos, Geocaching, The bridge loop – 350m
Total Steps Taken: 7,177
Difficulty level: intermediate