Thursday, 21 October 2010

Phase 1 begins - On the road with Alpha 2 and The New Trek

The Venture Managers and Venturers spent all of Friday working with the logistics team preparing kit for the various projects - worksite tools, food and tents.

There was a massive amount to sort out and everyone was rewarded with a good feed for dinner and 'random night', which meant pulling out whatever you could find from the fancy dress box and arranging it upon ones self as badly as possible.

Saturday morning started bright and early with everyone up and about by 3am to start getting ready for their Phase 1 deployments. After making some breakfast and lunch sandwiches the busses arrived and the process of loading them up with the gear began.

The first to head off were the Nicaraguan based Alpha Groups (1,6 and 7) on their big Transnica bus.


After that each group left once they completed loading their busses and ensured that all were aboard.

I left with Alpha 2 and we were soon on our way (Sorry Sophie!)

A long day was ahead and much rest was needed...

We passed through Guacimo before turning south towards the Volcan Turrialba. Once our bus could go no further we were off on the official start of The New Trek!

We walked for a few kilometers before we arrived at our first river crossing. The heavy rain in the mountains had raised the volume of the river and we decided to camp overnight to wait and see if the level dropped.

Not everyone had trouble crossing however!

The bad news was delivered and we decided to camp a safe distance from the river for the night and hope for no rain.

The PMs were also looking for alternate routes a bit further up the river and came across a harmless False Coral Snake.

We set up camp, cooked some delicious macaroni cheese and got some sleep.

It absolutely poured with rain overnight and in the morning the river looked no better - if not worse. We headed back out of the jungle to the main road to head towards the alternate route.

We needed to head East to Babylonia before once again heading south towards Volcan Turrialba.

We arrived at the bus station at Guapiles and had some time to kill before the bus arrived. It was unknown at this point if the bus passing through here would be full or not - if it was it was another 1km to the main Bus station.

It was indeed full, but we were soon at the next station and on our way.

We stopped for lunch at a lovely spot on the side of the road...

We arrived in Babylonia, topped up our water and kept moving...

... and after a few more kilometers arrived at our destination - La Florida - where we set about trying to secure somewhere to set up our tents for the night.

After doing our coms for the day, we had secured offers of the local football field, complete with flushing toilets or the community center (once the party finished). These were both trumped, however, by the offer made by the amazing Solo who offered for us to overrun the entire downstairs of his lovely house, asking nothing in return.

A thankyou from everyone.

The next morning we were once again on our way, but no longer with Volcan Turrialba in our sights. The heavy river and detour left us with no choice but to go around the mountain and meet up with the intended route on the other side.

It was a big climb up the hill, but it was worth it in the end for the view of the sprawling lowlands out to the Caribbean sea.

Good work!

We weren't done yet though...

Another lovely lunch spot

And on our way again

We arrived then at Pascua and had to make a decision - did we make a massive detour to see Monumento Nacional Guayabo and then double back on ourselves to meet up with the initial route or take a more direct route and give ourselves a day in lieu?

The PMs left the day leader, Josh, and the group to nut it out and they soon came back with a decision - take the direct route and have a day spare. It was a tough decision to make as they had already missed the volcano climb, but they felt it was the best option. We were permitted to use the Pascua community center and had a great night after doing our coms.

The next morning was the most stunning sunrise I have ever seen in my life, bar none. I will let the pictures speak on my behalf.

We were then on our way, one again.

Another snake

We climbed a massive hill - in some places so steep that I was on my toes only. Once we all got up to the top there was a huge sense of relief and achievement, but it was very, very hot so we found some shade under a bus shelter and took a few minutes to recouperate.

We then headed down the other side of the hill towards the old unused railway lines which would hopefully get us quickly to our day 5 stop - 1 day early as planned.

The hill down was very steep and hurts already sore feet a lot, but everyone managed in the end and we met up with the old tracks where we stopped for water and some lunch.

Blue-Jeans Poison-Dart Frog


We met some unpassable areas but always managed to find a way to get around them, until finally we got to a point where we could not pass. There was massive dissapointment and dejection as we needed to backtrack all the way back up to the bus shelter - a hard walk.

It was a massive effort from everyone - I can honestly say I've never been so tired, but we made it back up to the top only to be greeted by Bravo 3 with the day 4 food and kit dropoff.

This was where I very sadly left the group (feeling more than a little guilty) after wishing everyone well and letting them know I would be seeing them again soon. On the drive back to fieldbase my heart dropped with every steep hill and I was very worried that they did not have enough light left to get to the next town - Sauce. I was beyond happy and really proud when I heard them call in to let us know that they had made it, becuase I had seen what they had dealt with in the previous four days and knew what a feat it was to get as far that day as they did.

I'd like to say thanks to Polly, Laurie and James for their excellent work as PMs and Adam, Ana, Amy, Ben, Calvagh, Cecilia, Corinne, Jan, Josh, Sophie, Tom and Victoria for your amazing company and just doing so well - not a single whinge the entire time. I can't wait to see you again for the Dragon and then hopefully at the finish line at the Pacific!


  1. jan van arkel 10l alfa 2.

    yoo bannes28!
    ben weer lekker fifa aan het spelen hier, met mijn virtuele prof!
    eergisteren ben ik met jasper naar ajax-auxerre geweest, hier een korte samenvatting:
    Ajax begon ijzersterk naa 6 minuten schoot lindgren op de paal, nog geen 30 seconden later scoorde demy de zeeuw,PRACHTIGE GOAL. hij schoot hem vanaf randje zestien precies in de kruising. na 35 min ging ik even wat te zuipen halen en een lekkere frikandel er bij. ik liep terug naar mijn vak en toen zag ik een schot van luis suarez in de lange hoek belande, ik wilde gaan juichen springen en gek doen maar dat ging een beetje moeilijk. Het begon een saaie en slechte wedstrijd te worden in de amsterdam arena waar het dak nog steeds dicht was. Na een mooie actie van een neger van auxerre die door gebroken was haalde andre ooijer hem lekker hard neer, dus een roode kaart voor andretje en een vrije trap op een gevaarlijke plek. de speler krulde de bal langs de muur netjes in het hoekje, 2-1. in de 70ste minuut begon er weer wat leven inde brouwerij te komen. een speler van auxerre kreeg zijn 2de geel door een handsbal, ondertussen kreeg ajax een hoekschop. Een speler van auxerre die aan het inlopen was was het er blijkbaar niet mee eens ( dat liet hij zien ook ) dus kreeg hij geel, maar daar was hij het ook niet mee eens dus dat liet hij ook weer zien dus een roode kaart. auxerre drong wel aan maar dat lukte niet. dus eindstand, twee-een. volgende verslag zal ik er weer op doen.

    p.s. twente speelt gelijk tegen werder bremen 1-1.

  2. Hi Holly (Alpha 6),
    I hope you are enjoying your home stay. Not a whole lot new around here. Hopefully you received my post about the apartment. Carly signed the lease. Natalie's dance group had a great audition and they were accepted into the talent show. They named themselves Naddie Jam (Natalie, Maddie, Jason, Sam). Had dinner over at Karen's with Audrey and Mark while they were in town. I wish this wasn't a one way conversation! So looking forward to your next email in a few weeks. Can't wait to hear all about your adventure. Stay strong and have fun! Love, Mom

  3. que bueno verte feliz, distrute y cuidese, bonitas fotos.
    por aca todo bien, solo que hay alguien aca q dijo: que pateperros, jejeje ya te imaginas. DIOS LE BENDIGA ESPERO VERLA PRONTO!

  4. Cecilia Ruiz, alfha 2,
    te quiero mucho y te extrano!!! que bueno verte feliz, espero que se este cuidando, bonitas fotos, saludes a todos los del grupo.
    alguien por aca dijo: que pateperro!!!! ya sabes quien, JeJeJe. Dios le bendiga!!!

  5. Ceci Ruiz , alpha 2 te quiero mucho y te extra;amos!!!! estoy cuidando al bob, esta mas grande.

  6. hi Martin Fallon, the Pictures are amazing, what a great project you are doing, hope your not working to hard! Keep safe love from us all xx

  7. To Sophie, Alpha 2.
    Wat ben ik blij dat er een heel verslag te lezen is van jullie trek so far- het compenseert een beetje dat ik je zelf niet kan spreken...Ik heb het al een paar keer gelezen en de foto's bekeken; ben onder de indruk schat. Het is volgens mij lood- en loodzwaar, behoorlijk afzien. Door de regen zit het af en toe tegen, lees ik. Begrijp wel uit de woorden van de fotograaf dat jullie het geweldig doen en dat de stemming goed is. Je werd speciaal genoemd bij het ' snelle vertrek', dat viel je dus vast niet mee- half slaapwandelend vertrokken?? Verder zag ik je op geen enkele foto kaartlezen, maar je was belast met de taak van telefoneren- beter!! Volgens mij is het de bedoeling dat jullie trek eindigt aan The Pacific; je gaat vast nog geweldige dingen zien.

    Hoop dat je genoeg kleren bij je hebt; twijfel daar wel aan als ik de foto's zie. Zag je ook met muggengel in de weer, zal wel hard nodig zijn in die vochtige hitte. Volgens mij is je groep bijna volledig Engelstalig- hoop dat je ook een beetje Spaans leert!
    Hier alles oke, ik heb nu een week herfstvakantie. Harda werkt hard bij Suitsupply, komt af en toe binnen vallen. Koe is dikker dan ooit!
    Hoop snel weer berichten over jullie groep te kunnen lezen; ik kijk als een soort verslaafde elke dag een paar keer of er nieuws is.
    Lieve schat, hou je taai; je bent vast in topconditie als je terugkomt. Weet dat ik aan je denk en zielsveel van je hou!! XXXXX Mams

    Oh Amykins, I can't lie, I laughed all the way through that blog. Sounds like you're having a right old adventure!! But that's the best bit, I hope you're all taking it in your stride and that you're still enjoying it :) I'm so proud of you!

    Can't believe you got the trek first too- how funny. You're looking fit and healthy in the pics :) so keep going girl!

    Lots and lots of love from Berry xxx

  9. daniel solis vuurmans22 October 2010 at 11:40

    Pablo Yglesias - Alpha 5
    Compadre espero que este aprovechando mucho el viaje.. aqui estamos haciendo cosas cheveres como palmandola... asi que tranquilo jajaja
    Paz mi hemano y disfrute!
    Deje de fumar coño!

  10. Lynne and Simon Cooper22 October 2010 at 15:20

    Message for Amy Cooper
    Alpha 2

    Dear Amy
    We have been looking at all the latest photos. It looks like quite an adventure and certainly character building!!How are your map-reading skills coming along??
    Hope your boots are still comfortable and your feet aren't too sore.
    The scenery looks amazing and the photos of the sunrise were beautiful.
    We are going to Manchester tomorrow and Grandma, Alisha and Maryah are coming with us. We will be trekking to the Lowry gallery and the Cadbury shop in the outlet mall!
    I had my HLTA assessment on Tuesday and I was pleased with how it went. He said that I hadn't left any question unanswered, so I hope that's a good sign.
    It's been really cold here and it was 1 degree when I went to work yesterday.
    Hope the rest of the trek goes well and we are looking forward to seeing more photos soon.

    Lots of love Mum and Dad xxxxxx

  11. Victoria Golding Alpha Six

    Hi Monkey! Just read the blog, it sounds amazing!! The pictures are beautiful, I'm jealous of the scenery, although the cathedral is looking pretty good in the early autumn sun. haha! Funny thing, you know the dizziness, well the specialist thinks it actually was caused by the barge! How funny is that, apparently it's really rare and it might take years to go away (or never go). Seems my brain got confuzzled! I for one am not surprised, silly brain!

    Anyway, I'm glad that you're having a great time, although it does sound quite tough going! 4am starts? Ouch! Keep having fun. Looking forward to your next email update.

    Love you lots! Rhiannon x x

  12. cecilia Ruiz Galo, alpha 2, hola mi nina, Dios le bendiga ahora ya tengo con que matar la nostalgia y agonia por saber de como estan basta con conectarme y ver esta pagina para controlarme.
    Cuidese evite el peligro, sabe que confio en usted.
    saludos a los del grupo.
    Dios le bendiga. mauri ya te vio en la pagina.

  13. ceci. ruiz, alpha 2


  14. To Adam Goldsworthy alpha 2

    Today it's my last day here, but I will come back next friday. I've seen loads of pics of you on the blog. It really made my day have some news from you. It looks that you're doing the more adventurous trek cause it's a new one but should be even more interesting be the first group. I'm sure you're tired all the time, I would be but I'm sure you're more than able to do it and as you said, in the end of the day, it's worth it. I can't wait to hear about all you're stories and adventures.
    Take care mi amor :)
    Susete xxxxxx

  15. Hi Polly and Alpha 1 from a living room in Exeter! We've enjoyed reading about your adventures. Well done for your resilience and hard work. Keep going and keep smiling. We look forward to hearing all about it when you get back to base camp.
    N & B (and B)xx

  16. Para Pam (Alpha 6)

    Hola guapa...yo no sé por qué pero lo que escribo no aparece...en fin...que fue el cumple de Iñigo..aún pide regalos. Besos y te escribo un correo más largo. TKM.

  17. Hiya Polly ( and Alpha 2).
    Great pics of the trek so far Pol. A big well done to whoever it is that takes them. The blog and the images show a team who are amazingly resilient, despite the problems thrown at them. A huge well done to you. IMO the sign of a really good team is its ability to take set backs in their stride and work around the issues. Alpha2 are showing just that. We hope everything is now running to plan and no further unexpected problems interfere with the group's enjoyment of the wonderful environment you are in. I read that, as this is the first trek on this route, you all get to choose the name for it. I have no doubt some pretty good ones will be suggested. Bill Bryson would have had a field day! 'Heartbreak bridge' and 'trek back tracks' were two of the less rude examples we thought of that were polite enough to post!!
    All fine here with us having enjoyed a good half term. Looking forward to reading more of Apha 2's exploits soon. Nothing yet of Giles' group but we will continue to keep a watch for them. Hope all is good with you Pol. Take care and keep your head up. Love you and miss you, Look forward to speaking with you when you arrive back at field base.
    Dad and mum. XXXXXX

  18. Jan van Arkel 10L Alpha 2
    Lieve jan,
    Fijn dat er een blog is en dat Raleigh steeds een verslag schrijft.
    Wij volgen elke dag de Raleigh site. Elke keer weer benieuwd of er weer een ander bericht staat vermeld over jullie.
    Wat een ontberingen hebben jullie moeten doorstaan.
    Auto zat vast en de brug was niet over te steken. In ieder geval heel heel veel lopen om op de plek van bestemming te komen.
    Wij zien je op enkele foto's vermoeid zitten en op een foto ben je groot wandelend in beeld met een meisje met donker haar.
    Is dat Sophie ? Je Nederlandse maatje waar je even mee Nederlands kan praten ?
    Het ziet er allemaal wel geweldig uit. Wij hebben respect voor jullie doorzettingsvermogen net zoals Raleigh over jullie schrijft.
    Geweldig als je de Pacific Ocean met elkaar haalt de projecten daarna zijn vast meer relaxed.
    Nog even doorzetten !!!!!!
    Wij leven erg met je mee.
    Hier thuis is het koud en herfstachtig. Wij zitten veel bij de open haard.
    Ruthger en Floor hebben herfstvakantie gehad.
    Floor met pa naar Rome naar Annet en J.P.geweest.
    Ruthger is aan het logeren bij Jasper geweest en een dag naar Amsterdam.
    Iedereen is druk met de begrafenis van Jur. Vandaag is hij thuis gekomen.
    Erg verdrietig allemaal en niet voor te stellen. Volgende week zaterdag is de crematie. Ruthger vandaag weer voor district gespeeld.
    Hij zit er weer bij.
    Morgen weer werken en de anderen naar school.
    O, ja de dag dat wij jou belde voor Jur is Bram aangereden. Hij heeft een nacht doorgebracht op de intensivecare van de Universiteit dierengeneeskunde te Utrecht.
    Bloed kwam uit neus en ogen. Het is een zware kneuzing geweest en gelukkig allemaal goed afgelopen. Hij ligt nu hier voor de openhaard zo als altijd weer rustig te slapen in zijn mand.
    Nou Jan hou je taai en wij genieten elke keer weer als we iets over je lezen of een foto zien.
    Veel liefs en kussen van ons allen We miss you

  19. heey ca,
    hoe is het daar?
    begint het allemaal al een beetje te wennen?
    heb al wat foto's gezien, het ziet er allemaal
    heel mooi uit. ben heel jaloers!
    laat snel wat horen.

  20. For Caroline ( alpha 5) ,
    Lieve Tientje, wat leuk om eindelijk weer een blogje van Alpha 5 te lezen. Ik zou je graag op je bergschoenen willen zien, midden in de nacht op zoek naar turtles. Wel jammer dat je niet op de groepsfoto stond! Sliep je of heb jij de foto gemaakt? De foto's van het kamp zagen er wel stoer uit. Hoop dat jij nog niet door je matje bent gezakt!
    Fietje heeft je gisteren ook geschreven, maar ik weet niet of dat goed is gegaan. Inmiddels is ze vertrokken naar Marbella. Morgen eerste golfles. Gelukkig is Robert er nog eventjes dit weekend, anders was het wel opeens heel stil hier! Met oma vanmiddag ook jullie blog bekeken. Ze leeft heel erg mee. Veel vriendinnen hebben kleinkinderen die met Raleigh op pad zijn of zijn geweest. Paps gaat ook zelfstandig proberen je een berichtje te sturen, maar weet nog niet zeker of hem dat gaat lukken. Dus ook van hem alvast een paar hele dikke xxxx, hoop dat je geniet!! xxxx Mammie

  21. Enjoying following this blog

  22. To Sarah Bond. I may have cracked this. We are enjoying the pictures and beginning to feel exhausted just looking. Love M and D

  23. conjo & duifje & brenda24 October 2010 at 12:28


    We zien vanaf hier dat je alleen maar met een meisje omgaat?! Zullen we eens even op de donkerstraat melden. Leuk dat je zo veel aan het lopen bent, wij lopen alleen van de traay naar de bushalte en terug! De rest staat allemaal op je mail dus lezen maar ouwe. Vergeet je lichaam niet bij te vullen!!

    Groeten en veel plezier,

    je matties

  24. Adriaan ten Bosch25 October 2010 at 02:18

    Hallo Sophie! (alpha 2)

    Dag Harda, ik zag al een prachtige foto van jou bij een telefooncel! Je wilde die natuurlijk gebruiken om Harda te bellen, maar ik hoorde weer eens niets. Wat ben je toch allemaal voor raars aan het doen daar in dat oerwoud? Kom toch eens bij harda in het Big Bed liggen, dat is veel fijner.

    Veel plezier Hard, je hebt het volgens mij geweldig. Tot snel, dikke kus,


  25. for Tom Campion

    Pictures look amazing. Hope you are having fun and enjoying the experience. Thinking of you
    Mum & Dad x

  26. To Charlie Gledhill - Flynn: Alpha 5

    Charlie! By the way mum and dad have tried to post about three million comments so it'll be amazing if this one gets through but still. Hope you're okay and having fun chilling with the turtles and all that, but honestly I think doing GCSEs is better by a long shot ;) Make sure you pick up lots of artefacts and souvenirs if possible and have fun in the jungle. Don't miss Daisy too much, and just to let you know, I watched Paranormal activity two last night. It has to be the scariest thing I've ever witnessed in the entirety of the universe! Anyway, mother and father send 'all their love' and I'd say stay safe, but as I don't see that happening, I'm just going to tell you to enjoy yourself! Lots of love (the better of the Gledhill - Flynns) Lucy xxxxx

  27. Jamie Devonshire27 October 2010 at 02:40

    Corinne! (Alpha 2)

    Looks like you're up a bloody huuuuuuuge volcano! I checked it out though and it hasn't gone of for about 150 years so you should be alright! Hope you're having fun and everything's going well - looks like you got to do the bit with most adventures etc in it now so that's pretty cool. There's a few of you walking around in your sexy boot-sock combo and I think there's one of you making food too but with your back to the camera... at least I know your getting fed!
    Have you got my postcards yet? I sent a couple before I left the UK and I've got some to send you now that I am Hong Kong. I got here fine, been here a week now almost to the minute. Done sorting out of bits, got myself registered down at HKFC and played/trained a few times so getting back into the swing of proper 11 a side footy (I might have grown by Christmas because I have to reach higher in an 11-a-side goal). Also sorted myself out with a new phone and number (+852 6571 9059) and settled into the house too. Been meeting loads of people down at the footy club which has been good, was in the bar until quite late on Sunday (a school night, bad idea) so i've had some fun. Went for a mooch at the weekend and i've started looking into visa application and there's a gay exam I am going to have to do to get a licence out here to work for mCAP but that's cool!
    I read on the blog that you can chat when you are on changeover which is a week today so that'd be good - sure we've both got loads to tell each other... I will send another postcard this week, not sure if they've been meeting you on the trek or not with mail hmmmmmm...

    Love you lots

    Jamie XXXOXX

  28. Jamie Devonshire27 October 2010 at 02:42

    Corinne (Alpha 2)

    One other thing, forgot to mention in the other post and it's a pretty big deal - we have been granted $10mn by the friends of IMQ, unconditional on whether they can raise more. It's now looking like we might launch with $70mn - we are going to get them to sign a form to check that they aren't talking porkies in the next week or so...

    Jamie XXXXX

  29. Message for Sophie ten Bosch

    Lieve Sooof! Toen ik je voor het eerst met rugzak en afritsbroek zag moest ik stiekem wel even lachen, maar neemt niet weg dat het zoooo vet is wat je nu doet!! Ik herkende je bijna niet! Het lijkt me wel ontzettend zwaar en moeilijk natuurlijk ook dat je zo weinig contact kan hebben met het thuisfront, maar dat zal vast wennen. Je wordt gemist in Hillytown, ik mis je ook maar nu kan ik je tenminste lekker volgen op dit blog. Blijf aan ons denken bij het afritsen van je broek en geniet ervan! Love you! Xxxxxx Loon

  30. Victoria Golding Alpha 6
    Hello Vit, Sounds as though you are working hard, we're really looking forward to seeing some photos. All ok here. We went to visit Tim at the weekend, walked so much he probably wont want to see us again! Gran good - has been to get a hearing aid. Half term nearly finished. Hoprfully we will hear your news next week. Look after yourself. Lots of love Mum and Dad.

  31. Saludos ariana como estas, pura vida, te quiere mucho y cuidese Maritza

  32. Saludes ariana de parte Karina, no se que hacer con todos los chicos preguntando porti, dime que podria hacer. te espera una boda

  33. Lieve Art ,
    Ik heb op je mail adres een berichtje nog achtergelaten , je facebook en ook een brief naar je gestuurd !Ja Ja op die ouderwetse manier met de post ;-) Hier is alles goed , het word elke dag kouder , maar we hebben het nog heerlijk in Formentera gehad. Phoebe zou gisterenavond nog dat ze niet wist dat ze zo veel van je hield . Dat vond ik wel mooi van haar gezegd , want ja Wombatslie we missen je natuurlijk. Hopelijk zetten ze eindelijk weer eens wat foto's van jou Alpha team op de blog , Over een paar dagen heb jij de wissel , ben benieuwd wat je gaat doen. Het regenseizoen zal wel aflopen nu daar heb je wel mazzel mee denk ik XXX van ons allen de Vossen (Mo)

    31 October 2010 12:31

  34. Lieve Art ,
Ik heb op je mail adres een berichtje nog achtergelaten , je facebook en ook een brief naar je gestuurd !Ja Ja op die ouderwetse manier met de post ;-) Hier is alles goed , het word elke dag kouder , maar we hebben het nog heerlijk in Formentera gehad. Phoebe zei gisteravond nog dat ze niet wist dat ze zo veel van je hield . Dat vond ik wel mooi van haar gezegd , want ja Wombatslie we missen je natuurlijk. Hopelijk zetten ze eindelijk weer eens wat foto's van jou Alpha team op de blog , Over een paar dagen heb jij de wissel , ben benieuwd wat je gaat doen. Het regenseizoen zal wel aflopen nu daar heb je wel mazzel mee denk ik XXX van ons allen de Vossen (Mo)

  35. Caroline and David1 November 2010 at 13:21

    To Charlie Bowden Alpha 4 (date 01/11/2010)

    Hi Charlie, this is Caroline and David following you. Just spoken to Nan and she along with us sends her love. Hope you are enjoying your big adventure, it looks exciting. Wish we were both 40 years younger.

    Look after each other in Alpha 4, and looking forward to following you all.

    All our love
    Caroline, David and Nan.

  36. Message for Anna Keen - Alpha 1, 10L

    Hi Anna,

    I hope your enjoying it,the photos look amazing!! were all missing you loads and hope your doing ok......not to many blisters and that your ankles are holding up!!

    Everything here is good, clocks have changed so winter is officially here!! dark by 5, its not nice!! were on countdown until you come back!!

    I'll start off with Mo because I am sure you are panicing by now after not hearing anything. She has her pre assesment on the 5th November and all being well her op will be on the 22nd November so I guess you will be able to speak to her at some point over the weekend if your back at camp! So don't worry, nothing to report at the moment until she has been in on Friday!

    She he has done a brilliant job with Sara, baby Ana arrived after a very long labour on Wednesday sleeping peacefully ..... :(

    I am sure she will fill you in on the details when you talk to her!!

    Onto happier things Mo said she spoke to Joe yesterday and he is well and Adam is good, he was back last weekend for Toints 21st and in true 'family clan' style it got messy as usual.

    Jack is good, working hard as usual, Colleen got that job on Blackbird Road and she is just starting her third week. So things are looking up, Andy is still job hunting, was held as a first reserve for a residential worker with kids in town but hasn't heard back so operation job hunt is still on.

    We went to PlanB last weekend which was really fab. I'm good, not been up to much just usual really, working but the computers have been down in the office so i have been working at home for the last week, which is nice!

    And of course Pagan ...... he is good too, still eating socks and rumaging through bins but apart from that he is his normal self ..... eating and sleeping lots!!

    Trying not to think about christmas shopping, I have been putting it off but really need to make a start now, got some ideas. Shops are full as usual already, I swear it gets earlier and earlier every year!

    Were all soooo looking forward to having you back but looks like your having so much fun!! I am so jealous!!

    I'll sign off for now but I promise I will write again soon, and will let you know about Mo as soon as we hear anything.

    I hope your having the most amazing experience out there but I can't wait to pick you up from the airport!!

    If you get chance to give us a FB update please do .... looking forward to hearing about the next adventure!!

    Take care of yourself.

    Missing you, lots of love and hugs

    Jo xxx

    P.s and Mo, Andy, Jack, Colleen, Joe, Darren, Adam, Emily ..... and Toint!!

    we all Love ya missy!!!
    Mo xxx

  37. Message for Calvagh Mc Manus Alpha 2 .....Looks like you are having an amazing time.......Great pictures!! Can"t wait to hear some news from you!!
    Keep on keepin on and have loads of fun....Miss you.... Lots of Love from home!!!! mom and dad....

  38. Calvagh,

    Tu nous manques enormement!! Ca a l'air d'aller super bien! Les photos sont incroyables et tu as l'air totalemant dans ton element!
    Dis-moi si tu as recu le paquet que j'ai envoyer! Maman m'as dit qu'on a pas le droit et je n'ai que su ca par apres!

    Donne-nous de tes nouvelles qd t de retour!!
    Love you so much!

    Pura vida!


  39. Calvagh-Alpha 2
    What an adventure with amazing memories that will stay in your heart forever. Hats off to you, and everyone there, for what you have accomplished so far. Looking forward to hearing all about it. We love you very much....Leslie & Ted

  40. To Corinne, Alpha 2

    Corina guapa! How amazing to see how well you're doing! So proud of you and got to say, that picture of you in your sunglasses in the jungle is absolutely amazing, you look fabulous! Miss you loads and will send you a big update of my dull dull life soon, just so it makes your time even more amazing! Love you loads, come home safe and we will enjoy some kalimomo and pretend to be in Spain. Much love, Suz x x x x x x x

  41. Corinne (Alpha 2)
    Well hello there corinna davels. I'm loving your treking get up. Sounds like you had it tough but I know your super determined so well done lad. Is there someone in your group called mcmanus? you can never escape me haha
    My news is pretty much hockey,drinking and my dissertation - probably in that order as well.
    Went out for a halloween and played a game of ask them who they are? ie someone in a full spiderman get up - ask what are you dressed as?
    Get some cracking responses and some angry ones but its all banter.
    Newcastle is soo cold and I must be getting old as I have bought an electric blanket and I've got a bus pass haha.
    November is a busy month of birthdays etc so I'm stopping in tonight to save my pennies and watch xfactor.
    So you got were you wanted to go next wahoo. Building the alternative way - I did this in uganda crazy stuff - did I ever tell you I went to africa?
    I'll reply to your fb message when i get some news as exiciting as yours.
    Keep safe and warm and laugh all day long.
    Miss you like a hole in the head
    lots of love and hugs

  42. Hey calvagh. You look like you were born for this adventurous life. Enjoy every minute of this chance in a lifetime. You're looking great and I hope you are having great craic. The nature around you looks so special. Dying to hear all the stories! Keep safe keep well and look after each other all of youxxx love auntie anne

  43. Message pour Calvagh Mac Manus (Alpha 2)
    Hé Calvagh ! Nous venons d'avoir regardé ces premières photos, et ça a l'air d'être costaud !
    Martin et Thomas sont impressionnés par ce solide chemin, sans craindre pour toi. Ils savent que tu peux assurer sans problème. Est-ce que tu penses encore à Bruxelles ? Qu'est ce qui te semble le plus important pendant que tu marches avec ton équipe ? Chapeau pour ton engagement.Nous pensons très fort à toi et t'embrassons bien fort. Anne Bogaert et les trois mousquetaires

  44. Salut Calvagh,

    Quelle belle aventure, tu as de la chance de faire partie de cette expérience, je sais que ce n'est évident tout les jours, et qu'il faut avoir du courage et un bon moral (et ça je sais que tu en as suffisamment), mais crois-moi cher ami, une expérience comme celle-ci ça change un homme.

    Profite Bien! et fais attention à toi (j’ai vu sur les photos des serpents qui se baladent :D ).
    A bientôt.


  45. Nice pics bro,enjoy your time there and hope some day you'll do the same in Brazil.



  46. Hi Calvagh-

    delighted everything is going so well. The scenery is beautiful - nearly as good as connemara! It looks as if you're having a great time...

    lots of love and god bless,

  47. Hi Calvagh

    my second attempt! Looks beautiful there and you seem to be walking forever. Nothing like the basic lifestyle to sharpen the appreciation! We look forward to hearing your stories.

  48. Message for Sophie, Alpha 2
    Hi Sophie, prachtig om te zien allemaal. We zijn reuze benieuwd naar je belevenissen. 2e Kerstdag zal een spannende avond worden. Ik heb ook een tijdje bij de telefoon gestaan omdat ik zag dat je wilde bellen, maar die is niet doorgekomen. Geen probleem, we wachten gewoon tot je weer bereik hebt. Hou je taai en veel plezier. Kussen, John.

  49. Corinne (Alpha 2)


    You sure know how to work 'trekker chic', you look fab! You definitely rock the walking boots/socks/shorts look better than anyone else ever could, so I'm super proud of you for that! Hope you're having a fantastic time out there. Make sure you avoid those snakes... not sure how well I'd cope with them.

    Liverpool is currently very cold and expecting snow at the weekend, but I promise we won't make any snow men without you. We'll wait until you get back for a repeat of last years snow man extravaganza.

    We all miss you tonnes and can't wait for you to get back but not until you've had all the experiences you hoped for and made loads more memories! Keep up the good work lady, so proud of you.

    Love you lots and can't wait to see what you get up to next.

    Han xxx



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