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Take off!

As I sit here in departures waiting for my connecting flight, I’m surprised by how relaxed I am. Two days ago I was on my return flight from Istanbul  after swimming the Bosphorus Strait, the Europe to Asia swim, dreading coming home with only 2 days to pack and finalise everything for my bringing down the iron curtain expedition. The dread only lasted that 3 1/2 hour flight. The last 2 days have actually been quite calm and not panicked or rushed. I’ve had time to spend with my nephew and 7 week old niece, I enjoyed a “final supper” of a roast dinner and rhubarb crumble dessert with my family and said all of my goodbyes for the next 4 months or so. I’ve certainly not lost any sleep worrying about what I’ve not done or things I’ve forgotten to pack.

I’m wondering if I’m simply “ready” or if the reality just hasn’t hit yet. Right now I feel mentally strong, prepared and organised, most of all I’m so excited! I can’t wait to see my first wild reindeer, wake up feeling the breeze on my face every morning and appreciate some stunning scenery. Already I’m overwhelmed by everyones support and interest at home and on social media. It is just little ol’ me going on a very long walk at this stage after all!

I’m buzzing! This plane can’t take off soon enough and I’m ready for whatever the arctic wilderness throws at me. I know I’ll have my grumpy moments and obstacles to over come, but very few things are really that bad and I know I just need to keep reminding myself of this excited feeling, why I’m doing this and the charities I’m doing this for.

I have turned my life upside without a second thought for this expedition. I’ve quit my job, rented out my flat and abandoned my very happy life in London for this adventure. Have I ever doubted what I am doing? No. Have I thought about the consequences of abandoning my sensible, salaried old life? Hell no! Do I think thats normal? I really don’t care if it isn’t. I want to live in the now. Life is for living and I want scars, stories to tell and images in my head that make me smile. I want to get out there and meet some of the incredible people in this world. I believe adventure makes you stronger and enriches your life. Right now I just can’t believe that I didn’t do anything like this sooner.

Over the next few months I’m going to go through many things, good and the not so good (I refuse to use the word bad as we learn something even from the worst situations). I know I’ll finish it with a huge sense of achievement and will hopefully have raised a lot of money for my two chosen charities, Hope and homes and walking with the wounded.

Right, I have to turn my lap top off as we’re boarding for our flight to the arctic circle. How incredible is it to say that?!?!