November 2014, with a few weeks remaining of my African run, I received an email that made me feel on top of the world. I had been shortlisted for an award... the Physical Endeavour category at the National Adventure Awards. This came at a time when good news was needed as we thought 'Mike on the bike' had malaria!
I have never been a nominee for any kind of award before, and just the thought of going to a ceremony like this, as a spectator, is exciting enough for me.
Once I got my head around being shortlisted, I thought I would have a little google of all the others nominated. Holy moly, were my first thoughts. Seeing my name amongst such other incredible adventurers blew my mind. They have all undertaken phenominally demanding challenges.
As I am in Australia at the moment, I was unable to attend the award ceremony but my incredible friend Emily Pitts (www.womenclimb.co.uk) attended for me. Being ten hours ahead of the UK, I was asleep while the event happened. Emily had messaged me earlier in the day and asked who she should thank in the acceptance speech if I won. I assured her that there was no way I could win but gave her brief instructions, just in case.
I woke to a text from Emily saying I had won the award, I really didn't know if I was imagining it. Genuinely, seriously unexpected. I can't remember the last time I was so happy. I carried a smile from ear to ear all day, and pretty much told every person I met!
On collecting the award Emily gave a speech which in the words of Jamie McDonald, was 'incredible, you would have been proud'. And I'm sure I would, she has a far better way with words than me. I'm sure I would have stuttered and mumbled, and that's if I actually managed to get onto the stage without tripping over and smashing my face on the floor.
It seems like I really missed out on a fantastic evening and the chance to meet some truly inspiring individuals. Hopefully there will be other opportunities in the future. I am so thrilled about receiving this award and all the kind words I have received from people in regards to it. Thank you so much. Big love. xxx