What a fantastic weekend in London we've had!
I'll tell you all about the London Marathon in a minute, but first I wanted to share some photos of Buckingham Palace. Each evening the palace is lit up with projected images from 'Face Britain' (click here for more info). This project is encouraging young people aged 4-16 in the UK to create a self portrait which can be uploaded onto the project's online gallery and will then form part of the installation images projected onto Buckingham Palace to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee. My daughter took part at school, so her image will be projected onto the palace ...but unfortunately it's all random so I didn't see it whilst I was in front of the palace. It was a spectacular scene and made me very proud to be British!!
So, now let me tell you about the London Marathon. I go down to London each year to watch the Postie run, so I have a regular viewing spot that I always go to just next to the Tower of London as the runners come off Tower Bridge and approach the 13 mile (halfway) point. As you can see contrary to all the weather reports the sky was blue and the sun was out as I got to my spot around 8.45am.
The first entrants we saw were the Mens' Wheelchairs, this photo is actually David Weir MBE (British Paralympic) who went on to win the Mens Wheelchair title. As they pass by you cannot believe the speed and the sheer determination on their faces ..very humbling.
Next came the elite women, unfortunately the winner of the Women's race Mary Keitany is behind the motorcyclist on my photo. They went by with ease, their pace is astounding after 13 miles!
Then came the men, the eventual Male race winner Wilson Kipsang is in the orange vest in the left hand side of the photo.
After all the elite came by, the crowds of normal runners started to appear, hundreds upon hundreds. At a few points I panicked that the depth of runners was so deep that I would miss the Postie, but amazingly when I wasn't expecting he appeared, ran up to me and gave me a kiss and a big smile! Of course all the supporters around all went 'arrrh!' I was really pleased to see him, he looked steady and relaxed, and was ahead of schedule. Then my next journey began as I jumped on the Tube to St James Park to try and get a space on Birdcage walk to see him as he came towards the latter stage. Luck was on my side and I got a good vantage point, and again he saw me with ease as he steadily aimed for the last 600 metres.
The photos above were taken on Birdcage walk at the 600 metres to go stage. Unfortunately they don't show the Postie as I couldn't get my camera out in time when he passed by, as he was quicker than I expected.
The Postie ended up finishing in 3:51, which although isn't his fastest time at London, was actually under the 4 hours which he was aiming for this year. He had been diagnosed with a medical condition just before Christmas (don't worry not life threatening) which meant that his aim of 3 hrs 30 had to be postponed for London this year until he regains his previous fitness. So I was extremely proud of him to have continued to train and re-evaluate his target. He is now already planning his next marathon so that he can have a go at getting around 3.30... he's mad!!
It was a great weekend, and upon my return I'm overwhelmed with the lovely messages of support that have been posted...so thank you very much.
Apologies that this has been a NO knitting post, service will resume very shortly!
Goodbye for now.