Enter the new Reluctant Polar Explorer!

Not exactly a catchy film title or even book title but as it suggests, yes I am actually going to the North Pole.  I am part of a documentary crew filming four injured servicemen attempting to walk to the Pole.  It dawned on me after I thought it was a good idea to be in the crew; ‘how will I be getting to the North Pole’.

Walking too, of course.

So I am now pulling tyres around the countryside, sitting on exercise balls whilst watching telly but the best bit is the eating.  There is no bar on the consumption of calories, infact it is actively encouraged.  This is the up-side.  And of course to every up-side there is probably a jolly good drop onto the down-side…   The North Pole is unsurprisingly a very hostile area for human beings to operate in;

1.Its cold, very cold about -40 degrees,

2.Its cold and sometimes quite damp and when I was in the Scouts I was always told that this was a bad combination.  The thing about the North Pole is it is actually a frozen ocean and the ice breaks up sometimes which means that you either swim across the breaks or have to go around them… which can be a long way.

3.Its cold but not too cold for polar bears who for some strange reason can be quite attracted to human beings, (maybe they are lonely?)

That said it is a great challenge to be part of and this week I begin in earnest my cross country ski training with two Norwegians who have been assigned to look after our side of the expedition.  We did some training on a a frozen lake with them two weeks ago.  I packed my bag.  They went through it, pulling items out and tossing them to oneside with the words no, no,no… no and no.  I ended up with a bag of clothes about the size of my fist and was amazed they let me keep some Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream.  Ah a bit of luxury I thought, ‘no’ he said ‘its great for chaffing!’

… he was right!

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