Paul’s Blog – Autumn gathers pace

True Autumn has finally arrived but there is no need to feel down as a series of events are coming & going to lift the spirits.

Last Saturday saw the 31st running of the Snowdon Marathon, having pulled out of it last year due to Nepal & then forgotten to enter this year I decided to trot down to Pen y Gwryd (well in that headwind it was the best I could manage) to join a large crowd ready to cheer the runners on. I won’t go into any more details here but simply a great effort by all the runners & of course the organisers & supporters.

Later that evening we were pleased to welcome 55 members of team 333 & OVMRO to the cafe for their AGM. Everybody seemed relaxed & enjoyed themselves although there was more than a bit of hair pulled out by that quiz at the end. With our Quiz Night coming up on 16th November (see events page for details), again in support of OVMRO rest assured that I will be asking organiser Mike Lees to dumb down the questions but not quite as far as the BBC news has.

On 9th November the inaugural Betws Trail Challenge will be run over a 10 K course taking in the beautiful Llyn Elsi. I rarely run the forest trails on that side of the A.5 being more familiar with them as a walker. That said the attraction of a trail race on the doorstep on similar ground to my Swallow Falls & Llyn y Parc circuits meant only one thing, I’ve entered. No specific prep strategy at this stage (although that could change once I’ve visited Iain’s North Wales Spinal Clinic next week for a full assessment of my running & dietry habits – I am expecting a few ‘YOU DO WHAT’s’) other than a variety of runs in the lead in period & a lay-off the 2 days before. On that score a wonderful 16 miler yesterday was not spoilt by a hard fall 2 miles in (first nasty one this year), a few hobbles later I decided that I was feeling too strong to sacrifice the run just because of a bit of blood & pain. Great decision (I’m guessing Iain may say ‘YOU DID WHAT’) as I arrived back at the cafe over 2 hours later in the dark having enjoyed everything the Autumn colours & Weather had to offer in splendid isolation throughout.

Looking further ahead on 30th November we welcome Corin Hardcastle to the Cafe for an evening presentation covering his 6 month’s in the Himalaya’s helping to install IT into a local school & his experiences of sharing their day to day lives. I am glad to say that Davie representing ‘Classroom in the Clouds’ will also be joining us to en-large on their own activities of building schools, such as the one Fraser & I saw in Lukla, for the remote Nepalese communities. A date for the diary, free entry but donations to both charities of course expected.

On the music front our next Music night with ‘The Storyville Mob’ will be 7th December with support acts to be confirmed over coming weeks. Then in January, date to be confirmed, with the help of our good friend Michael Roscoe we are planning an open mic night based around folk music including of course Michael himself & his Flamenco Guitar.

Finally & on a sadder note I can announce the passing away of Dorina’s car, formally my old Audi. After over 460,000 miles from new, with increasing hospital bills where people often said to me ‘YOU’RE SPENDING WHAT’ I have been swung at last by the arguments for euthanasia/commonsense & let the old girl RIP. She is currently laid out in state (or should that be ‘a state’) at the Cafe car park, appropriately in the Long Stay side. Dorina & I are hoping that with every death their is a new life to follow, just hope for my sake that we are on the same wavelength in what form that life should be!

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