Thursday, 3 July 2014

And now for something completely different...

As I write this Monty Python are in the middle of a series of shows so it seemed an appropriate title. Pretty much all of my blogs to date have been about hiking and/or the outdoors,  but this is the start of a series of something a bit different.

I have been lucky enough to be selected to be part of the closing ceremony for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and I am beyond excited.   Having attended my first rehearsal I can tell you 2 things.  Firstly it is going to be AMAZING and secondly I will be telling you NOTHING else about the content.  No clues, hints or insider tips.  What happens in rehearsal stays in rehearsal.   However I thought it might be fun to track my experiences as someone who has never done anything like this in the past.

Well, actually that's a lie.  When I was younger I did a fair amount of amateur dramatics but the seating capacity of Bentley Methodist Church is somewhat less than Hampden Park.

The ceremony is on 3rd August and rehearsals began last night.  There will be 3 rehearsals prior to the games starting and then pretty much every day from 25th July onwards.   Evening rehearsals kick off around 5pm and can last until after 10pm.  This is a big and expensive commitment as I'll be staying over in and around Glasgow,  but it's going to be an incredible experience that will never be repeated and isn't that what life is all about?

I was so excited that I insisted Steve drop me off at Oxenholme half an hour before my train was due, you know, just in case...  Once in Glasgow it was over to Kelvin Hall to pick up my official accreditation before zooming to the hotel for a quick 20 min rest before rehearsals. I could have made it easier by getting a cab but you learn so much more about a place on foot.  In this case I learned how hilly Glasgow is...

First rehearsal was understandably a lot of admin and orientation but it wasn't long before we were on our feet getting to grips with everything.   There is a LOT to learn and most of us are way outside our comfort zones but the camaraderie is fantastic and there was a lot of laughter.   By the end of it I'd say most of us were exhausted,  excited and a little bit scared - but in a good way.

This is the start of an incredible journey which I'm going to track on here so I can look back and always remember it - and hopefully you'll enjoy coming along with me.  Next rehearsal is on Saturday and my priority before then is to buy a sports bra to avoid causing a diplomatic incident.   Bet you're curious about what we're getting up to now, aren't you?  :-)