My what a journey? What will the journey mean to those we have met, to us who have taken part and for those who we hope will benefit from the funds raised and from the awareness that has been generated?
What I can say is that we had good flights to Heathrow, the 'red eye' special arrives at 06:40. Tom was held up in immigration before he was able come through to get a coffee. After our downtime in DC we are now beginning to relax. It seems strange not be getting up by 05:00 each morning and working out routes stopping points, schedules to be sorted and all the rest that made up our time in the road. Four men and Marj in an RV for 11 weeks is an interesting experience.
No on this day no such issues, just a simple day, but one that was to be turned on it's head by circumstances.
So first Tom takes a coffee after arrival back in the UK. The Costa Coffee shop by arrivals in T5 at Heathrow.
No beard now of course and some sleep on the flight.
Our plan was for Tom to ride from Heathrow to The Cenotaph in central London but it soon become obvious that this would be too risky. The UK as been enjoying the worst summer for some time, even our reputation for poor summers has been eclipsed this year with the rain, it just hasn't stopped raining it seems. So the roads are awash. Add to this the annual Gay Pride march to take place yesterday in central London and on top of this one of the major routes into town, the M4 was closed, not to worry folk but the metal on the bridges seems to be corroding badly. So we have crazy traffic and gay people.
We take the sensible decision to ride by car into town.
The Cenotaph has been the UK's and London's place of remembrance for those killed in war since fist erected following the First World War.
The card reads: With our deepest gratitude, from the American People
And then on to a place called Slough. A town almost part of London and then to a Sainsburys (A UK
supermarket) to get the bike back on the rod.
We were met at Heathrow by Niel and between rain showers started to sort out the bike,
But, and there is often a but, but the very vigilant immigration people from the US had been there before us and had broken the wheel of the bike in closing the bike box. So no more riding to Brize from Slough.
Instead Tom was dropped at his home and we went to Brize later that day to conclude the ride. We were joined by the UK Team and other supporters.
My next job will be to sort though the 6 or 7 thousand images to produce a book (or three) of what we did, saw and met.
If you we could like to see a proof copy on line when its ready for printing or as an eBook let me have your email.
mine is firstname.lastname@example.org
One last thing, to the many, many wonderful people that have helped, encouraged and supported us across the UK and across America, my most sincere thanks.
None of this would begin to have been possible without your hands that reached out to us to help us in so many ways as we journeyed.
It has and been and continues to be the most wonderful experience for us all.