Andy Dogherty is a local who knows these parts and I was more than happy to let him navigate and lead the way. Andy in fact, ended up leading for 90% of the day which meant that I was able to "draft" and coast behind. Many thanks for doing that Andy, I had an easy day. There was plenty to talk about and we made decent progress. As we passed Butlins at Bognor I remembered that when we lived in Horsham, we took our son John, his 10 year old classmates and the family there for a birthday treat in 1983. There is a funy story that accompanies this but suffice to say, it rekindled happy memories that involved the blinding chlorine from the swimming pool, Optrex and the fact that because it cost £1.05, Maria didn't buy it!
Around Chichester, the odometer was just about to click over the 1000km mark. A cause for some celbration, but it occured to me that this represents approx 23 % of the ride. The Justgiving site however, was showing donations only slightly in excess of 4%. A bit of a depressing comparison which reminded me that we have to get out and shake the tins. There is certainly enough publicity. The Intertanko secretariat were kind enough last week to publish news of the ride in their weekly Members' Newsletter and having literaly hundreds of tanker-owner members, these are just the entities who can push us to the target.
The trip into Southampton was memorable mainly for the first real rain of the trip. We arrived at the Seafarers Centre to be met by Colin and Tracy. For once, Salvina and Candice weren't there to wave us home as they were out ship visiting with Roger Stone, AoS port Chaplain for Southampton. They did arrive shortly after, excited to have been to Fawley, having visited two tankers. I was so pleased as these definitely are my type of ships!!
The Centre laid on a terrific curry dinner and what a pleasure to see such a large contingent of seafarers' supporters come along to share a really good evening. Thanks so much to everyone who turned up. Thanks too to John and Kathy Hughes for putting me up. John, the Centre is such a credit to the efforts you put in to its initial creation and on-going success.