So when you receive an invitation from Billy Connolly to meet up, maybe have a chat and to have the Charity Oars signed, you leap at the chance. As you may or may not know, Billy suffered a life threatening blood clot, which his wife Pamela Stephenson diagnosed;
“After the prostate operation he developed a life-threatening blood clot on his upper thigh that at first his medical team failed to spot. ‘I knew it was a clot but the doctors weren’t listening to me,’ she says.
‘Eventually I spoke to an intern on the phone, who said, “Just get him to the hospital right away!” I threw him into a taxi; he was in agony and crying with pain as the driver drove up the highway from our home. The road was in a very bad condition, so the taxi was bumping over it, and Billy was saying, “Uh-oh, he drives just like you, Pamsy!” I said, “Billy, I’m saving your life here, stop going on about my driving!” Even though he was going through so much pain, he never stopped being his hilarious, curmudgeonly, adorable self. Fortunately I don’t take it personally; I just think it’s funny that he’d choose that moment to run down my driving.’ (full article click here reproduced courtesy of Mail On-line).
So we started looking at how exactly the Charity Oars could travel to Edinburgh. After recoiling from the cost, we made contact with East Coast Trains, we explained the reason for our travel requirements, who we were meeting, and all about the Charity Oars campaign, shortly afterwards a very welcomed envelope arrived and inside was a ticket to Edinburgh (as well as a return to the south..!)
On Wednesday the 15th October we ventured to Peterborough station (having learnt our lesson after World Thrombosis Day on the 13th October, when we got soaked) we went well prepared. On arrival a very cheery chap welcomed us to East Coast trains, and on arrival of the 09:46 we were duly assisted on-board. As usual the Charity oars proved a popular talking point as well as a photo opportunity for the crew, never one to be bashful the Charity Oars duly obliged and smiled nicely with the crew. Having personally commuted for far too many years into London, the journey “north of the border” proved a rather pleasant experience. The service on-board was wonderful, we reached Newcastle before I’d stopped talking to the crew and fellow passengers.
As we headed even further north, the line runs along the coastline, which looked amazing, albeit a tad chilly..!I spotted a few people enjoying the beaches, true they were wrapped up in coats, hats and scarves, but they looked as if they were having fun. On arrival into Edinburgh, the Charity Oars said their farewells to the crew and we strolled into the Edinburgh streets.
The journey to Edinburgh had been a pleasurable experience, we arrived rested, fed, on-time and having had a wonderfully relaxed journey. So from a new traveller with East Coast Trains, we send a huge big “THANK YOU” to everyone who made it possible for us to meet Billy Connolly in Edinburgh.