Hello, class. Now that we’re back, we have many topics to cover.
Yes, MarathonMum has been away. I know, I know, I should have put a thoughtful “Blog Break” message on my site, but I did not. (My friend Kathy Quigley did that at her very funny and addictive blog, http://journals.aol.com/ksqwrite/RandomReality/) Instead, if you kept checking the site, you were faced with the oh-so-classy headline, “There’s a Needle in My Butt” for nearly two weeks and I am sorry. The following are short tidbits to preview what I’ll be writing about in the days ahead:
* MarathonMum and family went to Germany for the half-term break. For my American readers, “Half-Term” is what they call weeks off from school. It can be a bit a nightmare here in England because all schools follow almost identical schedules. So if you go on vacation during the week off, chances are good you will be surrounded by other British families. When we were waiting for the Eurotunnel on our drive over last Monday, nearly all the cars and minivans around us contained school-age children with parents looking somewhat overwhelmed and apprehensive. When I told one father, “Happy Half-Term!” he just grunted at me.
Germany was very….interesting. We stayed in an apartment overlooking the Mosel River and the surrounding vineyards, which was beautiful. We did lots of hikes through the woods, toured some castles (one of which I didn’t get to see really because Nicholas wasn’t so interested), drank lots of wine and generally had a great time. Andrew has written a story about it, which I post with pictures.
*My marathon efforts have been included in the CAMFED website! I am very excited about this. To see it, go to http://www.camfed.org/html/story28.html. Faithful MarathonMum fans will have heard it all before, but it’s still incredibly cool to be recognized. Also, when they wrote the bulletin, we were at 140 primary school girls to be educated for one year, but the figure has now increased to more than 150 girls. I am going to do my accounting tonight and will have an exact figure by tomorrow.
*My friend Tom Standage wrote the Most Excellent Book, “A History of the World in Six Glasses.” I had the time while on holiday to read it, and I loved it. It got a great review in the New York Times on Monday, and he’s been on his book tour in the U.S. and Canada this week. Buy this book! My review will be posted shortly.
*Live 8 is going to actually happen in Hyde Park and will feature such legendary artists as U2, REM, Madonna, Sir Paul McCartney, Elton John, Coldplay and…Mariah Carey. More than 1 million people have already sent texts hoping to win tickets to the concert. As the chances aren’t great, I don’t know if I will enter the lottery, but it’s such a good cause, it might be worth giving it a try. All proceeds will benefit Make Poverty History, a cause close to my heart, and one I will write about soon.
*I have less than one month until my next race, the British 10K on July 3. Yes, my hip still hurts, but I’ve realized that it might just have to be some pain that I’ll have to live with in the short term. Nicholas and I had a great run this morning—the weather was gorgeous—so that makes me optimistic that the 10K won’t be the disaster that I fear.
I hope these short previews will hold you over until I can tackle these subjects properly. Welcome back, everyone!