Tuesday, March 3, 2009

How it all began - Susie's Story

I hadn't intended to do any extreme knitting in 2009. Oh no, not me, running the London marathon twice whilst knitting was more than enough! However, the best laid plans of mice and men often change and so it was that an email arrived in my inbox from Paul. He'd contacted me via the Alzheimer's Research Trust as he had a cunning plan - that we could perhaps do a ride on a tandem together with me as "stoker" (that's the person on the back), knitting at the same time.

Well, most sensible people would have read that and thought "don't be ridiculous!" but not me. Instead I read and re-read the email and thought "Hmm, what an intriging idea". I'm not entirely sure what this attitude says about me but I was willing to have a go.

Now there are 3 things you should know about my relationship with bicycles:

i) I hadn't ridden one since I was about 11 years old.
ii) I had never ridden on a road in heavy traffic and the thought scared me to death.
iii) I have never had the slightest desire to become a cyclist let alone cycle whilst knitting!

The other thing that worried me was Paul's reasons for doing this - I've been approached by several people who are attracted to the idea of gaining a Guinness World Record more than to the fund-raising side of things. Whilst the GWR is very nice, it is not my reason for doing the "extreme knitting" stunts. What it does is gain valuable publicity and has given me opportunities to talk about the horrors of dementia.

I was also slightly worried that he might be a great deal younger than me and it would look like a young man pedalling his granny out for a ride!

I fired off an email to him and waited for his reply. Thankfully he sounded nice and ticked all the right boxes so several emails later we realised we had to meet up to see if the idea would work in practice.

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