Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Kitchen Table to Kitchen Table Adventuring

Today the second of 7 batches of Race to Cradock riders hit the road. I'm happy to announce that I'm in the line up once again—I'll be sweeping in Batch 7.

The Freedom Challenge events are special. In conversation with Julia Fisher (accomplished adventure racer and Blanket Wearer) I asked her what she understood to be the unique aspect of the Freedom Trail. She encapsulated it in one short sentence, "They are the only events that go from kitchen table to kitchen table."

That's a profound summary. There's an implied intimacy—our kitchen tables are the space we share with our friends. In practice it's even more special. Riders doing a daily support station to support station ride typically start their day at 4am. We're not talking bread and butter breakfasts. In most cases the love of the home is poured out on the kitchen table in the form of hot food and freshly brewed tea and coffee. The hosts are often up a lot earlier sorting and folding the riders laundry from the night before. When the riders have clocked up another 10, 12 or 14 hour day they end their day sitting around another farm kitchen table and the cycle is repeated.

But that's not all... On one race I relayed to the race office that I would be arriving and pushing through one particular support station and hour or two after midnight and wouldn't need anything special. I said they could leave out cornflakes or a couple of slices of bread. When I arrived the host was waiting up for me. She said there was no way she wasn't going to give me something warm to eat. That is exactly the "kitchen table to kitchen table" experience that Julia was talking about.

In 5 days time I start my next kitchen table to kitchen table adventure. I can't wait.

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