Tuesday 28 October 2008

welcome to my office...

Today I went to Arran and the weather was stunning...I was gutted to be working and not climbing...

Check out my office for the day! Absolutely beautiful. Not as glamorous as it first seems, however. The wind was bitter - windchill must have been below freezing and we were out in it all day. Plus the mud. Boy was it muddy. I was extremely grateful for my gore-tex walking boots...and Phil may hate me for the muddy trousers I will be putting in for washing...

Monday 27 October 2008


I'm currently sat in a hotel room in Scotland - tomorrow I head over to Lochranza on the Isle of Arran for the day, sadly working - I would love to come up here to climb on the island some time...

Anyway, I thought it was about time I posted a training progress report seeing as there have been a couple of developments since my last posting:

The green V5 project is done. Gone. Finished. As is the yellow V4. And what's more, I have repeated both of them and in the words of Scott, I 'pissed all over' them. Awesome.
Actually, when I repeated the green it really did feel easy - I felt really strong on the crux power moves.

On Saturday, Scott and I went to the Peak district so I could teach him all about trad - gear placement and ropework and stuff. Sadly the weather turned horrendous so we bailed without actually doing any routes - we did manage to do lots of useful gear bits though so it wasn't a total waste. I also had a proper look at 'Long Tall Sally' at Burbage North - an E1 5b that I really want to do. I can now confirm, having sussed the route out from the ground, that I genuinely believe I can climb it without any major difficulties - it's just a matter of getting up there and doing it. Scott is super psyched to follow so all is good (maybe we'll even get up there next weekend...)

Having bailed to a cafe in Hathersage, we decided to head into Sheffield and check out the Climbing Works (indoor bouldering wall). It is an awesome place! We must have spent a solid 3 hours climbing. We were both managing to flash Fb6B's and work what must have been 6C's and 6C+'s. Hell, we may even have managed 7A's (the gradings were in a band rather than individually graded problems - we were playing on problems in the 6B-7A band).
One problem involved a semi-dyno to a sloper that I just could not do. Lots of other guys were showing off doing the move, but falling higher up from a pinch - eventually I managed to find a static way of doing the move and then proceeded to cruise the rest of the moves - Scott was ecstatic, the other guys sat around all looked a bit gobsmacked. I think there's a bit of a show off buried within me because that felt awesome - the reactions of these strong guys being burnt off by a young lass ;)

I was really surprised to be flashing so many of the problems (5 or 6 graded at least 6B) - I guess my training must be working :)

Thursday 23 October 2008

flying solo

Oh yes. Uh huh. Yep.

Yesterday I finally did it - my first solo, and I have to say that it was one of the most fantastic experiences of my life. I still can't stop smiling about it a day later. Actually I think this smile will last quite a while.

It was a bit of a weird one actually, as I really didn't expect to be flying at all yesterday. When James called me at about a quarter to ten and asked if I still wanted to go solo I couldn't say no now could I? I was told to be at the airfield for 11 when one of the other instructors would fly with me and make sure I was safe to go solo (I think James still has some kind of restriction on his instruction so legally he couldn't just send me off for my first solo without someone else checking that I'm not likely to embed the aircraft in someone's front lawn...).
It wasn't all plane sailing (geddit? no? oh well...) as this guy wanted me to do some things 'his way' rather than the way I'd been taught - so I got progressively more stressed and less neat the longer I was flying with him, I mean, telling me to use an entirely different set of flap configurations for my base and final legs right before I was meant to go up on my own for the first time surely isn't the best of practices.
(When I landed and taxiied back to the hangar James asked me what had gone on and really wasn't pleased. It would seem that trying to teach a student different methods immdiately before sending them solo genuinely isn't good practice. Will be interesting to find out what the CFI says about it...)

Anyway, despite the stress and horror of the check flight (which included an Engine Failure After Take Off - EFATO, a flapless landing and a glide landing), I was left alone in the aeroplane, on the taxiway, with the engine still running. Oh my god. It felt weird, eerie even - the cockpit felt so empty - I couldn't stop grinning though.

Run through my power checks, pre-take off checks, spin around to check out the downwind, base and final legs of the circuit - make sure nobody else is around to hit, initial radio call "G-XXXX, ready for departure", listen out to see if anyone's on final - nothing. I'm nervous. I can hear my heart beating inside my headset. I'm nervous but elated, thrilled that I am, for the first time ever, the pilot-in-command of an aeroplane!
So no-one's on final - better take off then!
Radio call "G-XXXX, lining up and taking off". Taxi onto the runway - flaps down to 10degrees, line up, breathe...
Full throttle and we're rolling. She's alot quicker with only me in the cockpit. 55kts, pull back and we're airborne. This is it. I'm flying!

65kts, trimmed for the climb, wow - she climbs fast with so little weight on board. Turn over to the lake to follow the noise abatement route, we're at 300' already - lose the flaps...I'm over the lake now, turn back onto runway heading, still climbing. I can see my visual references - the road and the railway line. Start turning onto crosswind, still climbing, still 65kts. Now we're at 1000' - level out, throttle back, still turning. We're on crosswind - I can see the runway perpendicular to the right wing. Wow, I'm doing it, I'm really doing it!

Ok so I'm over the golf course and the runway is no longer visible over my shoulder. I'm trimmed perfectly, flying straight and level, altitude a stable 1000', engine rpm around 2200, I'm cruising between 85 and 90kts. Perfect. Time to turn downwind. Must maintain a level turn - don't lose or gain any altitude - I can do this. Yes, perfect. Ok I'm nearly level with the end of the runway, time for a radio call "G-XXXX downwind runway 26, to land". Now for the checks.

Brakes - yes there's pressure through the pedals. Slight wobble as I press them (they're the top half of the foot pedals, the bottom half are the rudder controls, hence the slight shimmy when I press them). Good. Undercarriage - they're permanently fixed so this is just a memory formality. Mixture - is fully rich because I haven't changed it at all since taking off. Good. Fuel, yep. Flaps - they're fully up just as they should be. Instruments - all looking good, serviceable, the DI (Direction Indicator) is still aligned with the compass, excellent. Carb heat - check this, the engine rpm should drop a little when I put this on - it does, good. Turn it off again - I don't need this until I cut the power on base/final. Hatches and harnesses, yep, everything's still fixed in. Ok - downwind checks done, we're all good!

I've been talking to myself pretty much the whole time - it helps me to think everything through.

Ok the end of the runway is on my wingtip, I need to think about turning base soon. Right, pull the power out - about 1700rpm should do. Carb heat on and I'm turning. Flaps down, airspeed down to 75kts and trimmed, I'm slowly descending now. Nice and stable. Right, time to turn final - pull more power out and get the airspeed down to 65kts. 20degrees of flap now. Line it up - the end of the runway is stable in my view, I'm trimmed and using the throttle to control my rate of descent.
I can see no-one else is ahead of me so I call final - "G-XXXX, final runway 26 to land". Cool. I'm stable, confident and smiling. Looking left out of the window for a second I see that I'm coming in with a glider as my wingman - he's landing on the glider side of the runway. He's close but everything's exactly as it should be. This feels amazing...

Ok the runway's getting bigger in my view now, time to cut the power right back. Nearly down now - it's time to flare - we float for a second then bang. I'm on the ground...

Braking, braking, rolling off to the left. I stop. I'm down. It's done. Breathe. Ok don't relax just yet - still got to get back to the hangar. Do the after-landing checks - flaps up, carb heat off, electrics off. Ok, time to taxi back.
One last radio call "G-XXXX crossing threshold, runway 08" - checking, looking, making sure no-one's landing or taking off while I cross. Ok I'm over. Back to the fuel pump.

Parked, engine idling, 1200rpm. Final electronics off. Radio off. Kill the throttle, lean the fuel mixture and wait for the engine to stop. Key out, master switches off, headset off (my ears can breathe again!)

I've done it. My first solo flight. James comes over and shakes my hand - I can't stop smiling. I guess now I can call myself a pilot...

Wednesday 22 October 2008

gym training, part 2

I went to the gym again last night for a couple of hours to work through 'the plan' formulated previously. Now, whilst I did stick to it for the most part, there were a few differences with what I did last night:

The initial run - rather than doing 15mins with 1min fast intervals I ran for 20mins with the following fast intervals: 1min, 1min, 1.5mins, 2mins. Hard going, but not as hard as I may have originally imagined. I think in future I may try to up the basic speed (maybe try to run at 12km/hr rather than 11.5km/hr?), we shall see.

I also added a couple of sets of pull-ups before the lat pull-downs. I think I did a set of 10, then another set of 7. I felt rather self-conscious doing them but hey, it doesn't really matter now does it?

The last 10mins on the treadmill didn't happen - I did 2 mins before getting a horrendous stitch (too much water? not enough? too much ab work?) so I decided to go for a serious caning session on the cross-trainer instead. 12minutes of hell. Honestly, I thought I was going to pass out - I was obviously doing it right!!

7mins cooldown on the reclined bike and that was me done. All the other resistance exercises listed previously were carried out with no real differences.

It's going well I think. I feel like I'm making an effort and that it may well start to pay off soon - all is good!

Monday 20 October 2008


Phil and I went to pick up the new car. It's lovely. I'm actually really pleased - it may not be a good car, it may not be anywhere near new but, it has electronic central locking and actually starts when you turn the key in the ignition!!! I'm delighted. Simple things huh?

I also went to the gym for a couple of hours, and I followed 'the plan', I ended up totally knackered - I think it may be working!

I had a lay in. Until 1pm. Awesome. Then we went to pick Dave up and go to one of the big climbing walls for an afternoon session. It was good - I didn't think I would climb at all well seeing as the muscles in my arms ached really badly from my gym session the day before. How wrong I was - it was actually a rather good session - I managed to repeat the hard crimpy (English) 6a boulder problem I worked last time and flash another 6a! I've never flashed a problem of that grade before - ok so I don't think the problem actually warranted the 6a grade, 5c maybe, but still - I did feel good about it!
We also did some top-roping. I'm managing to get myself back into the route mentality and thought that trying to top-rope some hard ones might be fun (in truth, I couldn't be bothered to get the rope out).

Tried a 6b+ - couldn't get off the floor. Tried the 6b and then the 6a+ on the same panel - same problem. All three were set by the same person - hmm. The 6a on the panel was nice though, I did it clean, first go.
Next we moved on to a different panel where I settled on trying a 6c - I think I must be mad. Had lots of gos on it, getting further each time and making each move cleaner with each attempt. I didn't finish it but am pretty sure I could if I had a few more tries. I gave up because I think Dave was getting bored belaying me. We then did another 6a+ that was pretty horrible.
Had a quick campus - not feeling particularly strong on it, but I had just had a pretty heavy session so I guess it's understandable.

Today I am drinking far too much tea - we may have an interesting tea-o-meter reading tomorrow.
I am also seriously struggling to finish the report I was supposed to have finished days ago. Oh well.
I keep thinking about the contracting job I've applied for and am a bit worried that I may have gotten my hopes up too high. I only sent my CV off last week though so I just need to be patient I guess. I could really do with getting out of here...

Friday 17 October 2008

I'm definitely getting stronger!

Phil came to the wall with me tonight! He climbed really well too actually - I was genuinely really impressed by just how he's progressed and how much his footwork has improved with his new shoes. Awesome stuff.

I tried the green V5 project again and managed to do the first and last halves in isolation. I also managed to link through the crux once - this thing will go, I know that now!!

I also got drawn into trying the current hardest set woody problem again, even though I was getting nowhere with it before - it is a crimpy V5 on a 4o degree overhung training board (aka 'the woody'), with super small holds requiring lots of body tension.
I was doing all but the last move pretty much static! I stunned myself - honestly I had no idea I would be anywhere near strong enough to pull on those holds tonight (on wednesday I really was nowhere near it). I think it will go and this makes me phenomenally happy - tonight was another indication of progression and increasing strength.

I really have moved off the plateau - bring on the hard stuff!!!

I just want to go solo, dammit

Today should have been the day. Really, it should. The weather conditons were absolutely perfect, I had a lesson lined up at 2pm and another at 5pm so in theory I should have gone solo in one of those sessions. Sadly, once again, it wasn't to be. This time it wasn't anything to do with me though - it was a combination of the club only having one 152 airworthy (out of 3, how did that happen?!) and one of the other students getting 'lost' on a qualifying solo cross country flight. Goodness knows what actually happened but my instructor had to go and 'rescue' her from Gloucester. He was also the only instructor at the club today, so my 2 o'clock lesson simply didn't happen.

I did get an hour's flying in (the 5pm slot), but unfortunately wasn't allowed to solo because there were no other instructors around (I think there's some kind of procedural thing), even though my circuits were brilliant.

We flew from the 'other' runway today - the one I have never used, and despite this I flew the circuits as close to perfect as I think is ever likely to happen. It was beautiful. Every radio call, every air speed, every altitude, every angle of turn, every landing - spot on! I'm really, really happy with my performance today.

There is a slim chance that tomorrow morning may see a solo opportunity, it all depends on the club and the volunteer glider squadron who operate on Saturdays...we shall see - fingers crossed!

gym training, part 1a

The gym session went well last night, and for an added bonus I don't actually ache that much today because of it (I think today's aches and pains may be attributed to other things - car accident, cold/flu type thing, time of the month...)

So, the amended gym program has now been formulated and tweaked and will be followed for the next few sessions. I just need to make sure I start going more regularly...

The program:

15 min run (broken down as 0-4mins @11.5km/h, 4-5mins @13.5km/h, 5-9mins @11.5km/h, 9-10mins @13.5km/h, 10-13mins @11.5km/h, 13-14mins @13.5km.h, 14-15mins @11.5km/h, 15-18mins cooldown)

Machine Row 3 x 10reps @ 20kg
Lat Raise 3 x 10reps @ 20kg
Shoulder Press 3 x 10reps @ 15kg
Lat Pulldown 3 x 8 reps @ 42kg

L-hangs/sits 2 x 10secs
Leg Raises 2 x 10 left
Leg Raises 2 x 10 right
Leg Raises 2 x 10 front
Crunch Machine 3 x 10reps @ 30kg

Press-ups 2 x 15reps

10 min run @11.5km/h plus 2min cooldown
12min Cross-trainer

Reclined bike cooldown (approx 5 mins low resistance)

This took around 2 hours to complete last night, but I did spend quite alot of time faffing between machines and trying to find a pen to write stuff down.
If I only have time for a short session then I will probably not do the leg raises, as these felt like they took a while with all the resting between sets. I would also probably only do 2 sets on each of the resistance machines to cut the time down.

Thursday 16 October 2008

gym training, part 1

Despite crashing the car earlier I still plan on going to the gym tonight (Phil is off out to see a friend so I need to amuse myself somehow!).

More conversation with Scott has gotten me to write stage 1 of 'the plan', and here it is.

Gym session

15min run

Shoulder press 3 x 10reps
Machine row 3 x 10reps
Lat pulldown 3 x 10reps

L-hangs 3 x 10seconds
Leg raises 3 x 10reps left
Leg raises 3 x 10reps right
Leg raises 3 x 10reps front
Crunch machine 3 x 10reps

Press ups 4 x 15 reps

15min run
10min Crosstrainer

The weights and speeds used are currently undetermined, tonight should provide a good opportunity to set some standards (I intend starting easy and not overdoing it, hopefully).


This morning I wrote off my car. Brilliant.
No-one was hurt (my neck aches a little but nothing major) and that's the main thing. Irritatingly I now need to find another car. Money I could really do with keeping and spending on more important things - like flying.

Tomorrow I have a couple of lessons booked. At the moment the forecast looks good - dry and not much wind. My instructor messed me around yesterday (long story short - he went flying with someone else during my lesson slot, and didn't tell me - mucho annoying) and has promised to make tomorrow a good one and *hopefully* send me solo at last. I just need to not mess up like last time. To that end, I have drawn myself a nice little diagram of the circuit with all the things I need to remember (see below).

Wednesday 15 October 2008


I've just been having a rather interesting email conversation with a friend who is super keen on training and improvement. His climbing has come on hugely in the time I've known him (or more to the point, have known of him - we only started talking and became friends very recently).
He seems to think that I, and I quote, "have all the attitributes of a top class climber" and I just need to apply myself more, train more effectively and generally get my a*se in gear (my words, not his).

It's nice to know that someone believes in me, personally I don't think I will ever be anything like a 'top class climber', but I do hope to position myself in the 'well above average' bracket.
To do this I need to sort myself out. My higgledy-piggledy approach to 'training' just won't cut it. I need to structure my efforts.

So, Scott has offered to train with me one day a week - I will bite his hand off at this offer as firstly, training with a partner is much more fun, and secondly it may well provide me with the incentive/motivation/kick up the backside I so sorely need.

So anyway, in my current state of positivity and determination, I have decided to heed Scott's advice to sit down and write out a training plan - complete with goals/targets and a 'structured plan' for attaining them. Goodness only knows how long it is going to take me to do the first run of this plan but I shall use this blog as a public admission of progress (so hopefully I will stick to it!)

Tuesday 14 October 2008


I've just sent my CV off to a nice chap who may well hold in his hand the opportunity to give me the most fantastic job in the world (or at least that's what I'm thinking at the moment in my fevered, caffeine ridden mind).
Maintaining remote radio sites in the Highlands and on the Islands of Scotland, contracting. Honestly, I can't think of a single job I'd rather have, and I've been trying to for the past few weeks.

Anyway, it is done. I've sent all the stuff off - my overloaded CV and snivelling covering email. Hopefully he'll still be interested even once he's read it all. All I have to do now is wait.

Scary stuff!

On a side note, I went the the wall again last night and had an abysmal session. I knew it wasn't going to be a good one when I fluffed a traverse problem (this is completely unheard of). Not good.
I was weak and pathetic but never mind. I think I spent most of the session chatting to people anyway.
It wasn't all bad, however. Nat persuaded me to try a woody problem I had previously dismissed as simply being far too reachy. Long story short, I did it. Even the deadpointy type dyno move I got wired in the end, and I am notoriously crap at these.
At least I achieved something, even though it was only a V3 ;-)

I did have an entertaining drink in the pub afterwards - Richard and I may well have arranged a climbing trip for some time in November and I met and had a good laugh with a couple of medically inclined women who [I think] were new at the wall. Much hilarity was had. All good really!

Monday 13 October 2008

glider circuits...

...are definitely easier than the circuits I have to fly in the 152. I mean, there's hardly anything to think about and do! No fuel, mixture or carb heat, no flaps, no trimming, no fixed levels and speeds to adhere to - it's all quite simple really - just point and go!

Landing a glider is also [I think] easier than landing the 152. Maybe it's just that I felt more relaxed at not having so many things rushing through my head, but the glider landings I did on Sunday actually felt quite calm and simple. I think I could get the hang of this gliding malarky quite quickly if I really wanted to...

Sunday 12 October 2008

climbing when tired may not necessarily be the disaster you'd expect

Just to even things out with the flying being a total nightmare when tired, bouldering indoors whilst being totally knackered actually worked out pretty well on Friday...

I got in from work at about 6am, slept 'til about 12:15pm and then went flying again. It wasn't as bad as the previous days but was far too windy for soloing to even be the remotest of possibilities.
I got home, rested for a bit and did some work on my CV (which incidentally may now be in a usable state - oh the excitement!).

Next, I decided to go climbing (my other option was another RT groundschool, but as Phil pointed out I probably wouldn't have really been able to concentrate).
No-one else was there! Ok I exaggerate but it was really quite empty, apart from the massive group of screaming kids...nice.
Anyway, I managed to get climbing with Simon and Richard - they just happened to be trying my red project and I couldn't resist joining in...
I watched them struggle on the start and then proceeded to cruise the first half, including the crux throw to the crimp! Sadly the last section that I had assumed would be easy, proved to actually be really rather awkward and involved a move that I had already fluffed by the time I realised what needed to be done. I came down and cursed myself, assuming that I wouldn't be able to do the crux again (as had been previous experience).
I cruised it. Or as Scott would say, I "smashed it out". Bless.

I can't even begin to say how happy I was over this miniscule victory, I mean, I managed to climb up 5m of plastic using some weirdly shaped red pieces of plastic and I was exstatic. Mad isn't it? I'm now left with a bit of a dilemma now though - I've finished my current project and need a new one...oh joy...

flying when tired really doesn't work

Last week I had volunteered to work nights at Heathrow. My logic was that if I was working the nights, I would have the days to do whatever I wanted - in this case being to go flying. It seemed to have worked out great too, the weather was good, I managed to pass my Air Law exam (big yay!!!) and was all set to go solo...
Sadly, flying after only having had about 4 hours sleep really doesn't work that well - I flew really badly on both good days (wed and thur). I was even struggling to focus properly. Needless to say, I didn't get to go solo :(

Oh well, at least I know now...

Tuesday 7 October 2008

pulling on plastic

My fingers are wrecked. Not properly, horrendously damaged or anything, just pleasantly worn.

Phil and I went to the Castle to boulder on Sunday and I had a reasonably good session. I flashed lots of English 5bs and 5cs and managed to work a 6a (I had done all but the last move with ease, despite it being overhung with desperately small, crimpy holds - the last move was really awkward). By the time I had finished the 6a (after many, many tries - always falling off the last move) I was too knackered to climb anything much harder than 5c.
Yesterday I went to the wall in the evening and had a rubbish session - mainly due to the fact that the skin on my fingers definitely needed more time to recover. Ok I say it was a rubbish session but in reality it wasn't all that bad - the red project nearly went. I made the hard move to the crimp with ease! Solid! Unfortunately it was at that moment that one of the instructors set about tightening a hold directly beneath me so I had to just hang on the crimp for ages until he'd finished. I managed the next couple of moves but then fell off, pumped. Still, it was my best go yet. I couldn't get that far again though in that session - I really was too fatigued.

Met a guy I hadn't seen for ages - one of the 'old school' from a couple of years back - turns out he'd had a nasty MTB accident (broken legs and arm), hence the long absence. Anyway, he's keen to get back into the swing of things so I may have yet another potential 'hardcore' climbing partner...excellent.

Today I was hoping to fly. Sadly the British weather doesn't want me to - it's raining and windy. Great. Still, I can hopefully finish going through my Air Law stuff this afternoon instead*

*This week I am working nights at Heathrow - lovely. On the plus side, it does mean that if the weather clears, I should be able to fly :)

Monday 6 October 2008

medical abnormalities...

Saturday was a day dedicated to nausea, tedium and general pain - I went to have my CAA class 2 medical. The medical itself wasn't actually that bad, although admittedly I was a little worried/freaked out when I was told to 'strip and put on the gown', it was ok though - I was allowed to keep my pants on! This was all for the ECG - the doctor had to stick the little sensor probe things on my chest and other areas.

Everything was fine for the most part, although he started off looking a little worried when he measured my pulse - 'do you normally have a low heart rate? I can feel some abnormalities in the rhythm...' GULP.
The ECG revealed that yes, I do indeed have a low heart rate and I do also have a bit of a weird rhythm - apparently my heart misses a beat fairly regularly. I was also told that while this isn't 'normal', it's nothing to worry about as it can be attributed to my high level of fitness (I think he must mainly have been referring to the low heart rate though, possibly...). He did explain that this is why I would feel light headed if I got up quickly (I must admit to being fairly amazed he knew, even though he's a doctor and would know these things) - apparently my heart sometimes needs to 'catch up' with the blood flow. Fascinating stuff...

Urine and blood tests too! Lovely. Still, at least I know I still don't have diabetes and my heamoglobin levels look ok.

The next major pain - I needed another form filled in by my optician. This meant an afternoon of faffing arounf in town waiting for an appointment and then having the most obtrusive, in-depth eye test I could ever possibly have imagined. The CAA don't want much!

An expensive day out all in all.

Friday 3 October 2008

thank goodness it's the weekend...

Today was a trial. So much admin. Horrible.

Tea-o-meter reading of 4, 87.5% so not massively stressful but getting ever so slightly desperate!

Anyway, I just got home from a session at the wall. I was feeling really weak, achey and sluggish but nevertheless actually had a remarkably good session.
I had a few more goes at the red project and whilst I still didn't finish the thing, I did manage to latch the crux crimp. I also managed the moves on from the crux but then fell off due to surprise/getting the sequence muddled/generally pumping out. This baby will go!
The blue project was also attempted tonight (this is what happens when you get involved in a really enthusiastic group) and happily - finished. Well, sort of. I didn't do the last move to the bar which appears to be a ridiculously uncontrolled slappy dyno for the big guys - it was far too daunting and scary for me. I have no real desire to break my legs/back by fluffing that move. Anyway, I'm happy to take the tick without it (the others all approved too) :)

Now - I'm sitting here munching my way through a warm fresh baked bread roll with blackberry jam on it - yummmm :D

Thursday 2 October 2008

pain and frustration

Yesterday's tea-o-meter reading: 3, 100% + 1 EHC

And what is an EHC? Emergency Hot Chocolate. Yes, things got that bad yesterday afternoon.

Anyway, last night I went climbing again and dispatched some more of the new boulder problems. I also managed to seriously struggle on a couple I had already done on Monday - serves me right for being such a show-off hehe.

Not a bad session, although I was feeling pretty sluggish after eating a humongous plate of Phil's amazing home made Chilli con Carne (this is my absolute favourite meal of all time - we really have cracked the perfect Chilli recipe!)
Anyway, Scott and I had a fair few goes at the red problem on the bulge - the current project. The grades have now been put up and it is apparently a V4, the same as the white I did a little while ago (and also the same grade as a problem I did second go and now consider a fun warm-up - hmm). Anyway, it's hard. I think I've got my sequence sorted for the first few moves, I'm just struggling to latch the hard crimp. Scott was managing this better than me and will [almost] certainly finish it next session.

There were also a couple of rather good looking chaps at the wall last night that I have never seen before - all good. Hopefully I will see them again :)

Now, my fingers hurt. I must have had 20+ tries on the red, plus repeats of other V3s and V4s and attempts at the other V4 project problem (ridiculous blue foot follow thing. This will probably go before the red if I really try it - there's only one slightly awkward move I need to find the balance for).

So in conclusion, I have definitely got stronger and it's looking like it may be a good time to get back to the more serious training again seeing as progress is being made :)

Climbing is painful...

Wednesday 1 October 2008

is it wrong...

...to maim someone for extreme technical incompetance?

Not having a good afternoon...

Ok, to elaborate somewhat - is it wrong to hurt somebody for failing to do their job properly, potentially jeopardising a £1.3m project, attending meetings drunk and pissing off one of our favourite customers/partners and creating a sh*tload of work for me to try to fix the mess before any real damage is done?

Ok so yes, it would be wrong to actually hurt them but even so, right now it would make me feel so much better...