Day 11

So, over half way. 11 days and over 700 miles completed. I am very proud of our achievement so far if I do say so myself. We expected today was going to be tough and we were not wrong. We had a 9am start on another glorious morning and got on the road for Middlesbrough around 25 miles away. The road was generally well behaved, not too many hills to start with but the actual surface in places was extremely difficult to cope with. The surface was so rough it shook our bikes all over the place and the vibrations made our fingers go numb.

We planned to arrive at Middlesbrough between 11 and 12 and we rolled into the carpark at 11.15 and was greeted by Colin Chapman the general manager along with a group of his managers with a banner. After the usual photos we went inside where we had a great buffet and refreshments waiting for us. Most welcome. We were both delighted to be greeted by our old mate Darren Heath who we both used to work with and I hadn’t seen for nearly 5 years. Middlesbrough was a very late edition to our itinerary so the staff didn’t know too much about what we are doing so I gave a brief presentation to fill them in. We then drew a raffle that had been organised for our benefit. Altogether we have been promised at least £300. Colin is so proud of his warehouse he wanted to give us a guided tour which I found very interesting. Colin, you should be proud of your DC and the people that work in it. A great welcome and an even better donation. Thank you all.

No time to waste, we still had lots to do so set of for Washington at around 12.30. As we got North of Middlesbrough the road started to get more difficult. The hills were starting to affect Karl’s achilles again and after 50 miles he got in the van. The hills were relentless now. Just no rest in between them. We arrived at Washington DC at 4.15. 75 miles done now and i’m really starting to tire. Washington is not a Tesco depot, it’s run by Fowler Welch so we weren’t expecting a welcome party but it was on our list of visits so that’s what we did. After a quick photo opportunity we headed on to Newcastle with Karl back on the bike. In total we covered 84 miles on another warm day with lots of difficult hills but we did it. I have not felt so tired in a very long time. Tomorrow we have to get to Scotland. Hills again, no doubt

Simon