Wow. I can’t believe we’re here, just under 3 months of that crazy Robla running across America. What can I say about it, well, a lot really but I won’t go on too much.
So, we established pretty early on that I absolutely cacked my pants when first driving Jenny; that she’s a big butted girl in need of constant attention (similar to me really) and I guess I’ve come to terms with the whole ‘wrong’ side of the road driving but I’ll be honest with you, I’m looking forward to getting back to tiny Britain, with my cute car and short distances and being able to ‘walk’ to a shop. I’m looking forward to having some good old beans on toast with a solid cup of tea and a bakewell tart for its companion (cake should always accompany tea in my opinion). I have mostly adored the views and drives along the open roads but the more busier places and venturing in the dark has not had me all too thrilled about a second ‘leg’ (anyone keen to join us for the next one? Must like driving.) I did it though and even though I was petrified (like, tears and everything) I wasn’t going to give up. I have learned and grown as people say. All challenges makes us a slightly newer person and I have definitely gained new skills (just come find me for any portable toilet questions). I have learned a little more about that Robert and I’m sure he has seen another side to my character, mainly the one that constantly asks him if he’s finished with what ever item he has ‘left’ out for longer than I’m happy with. It has been a truly interesting few months and not many people have ever done what we have together.
Making our way through the variety of scenes and challenges along the way, dumped us at the very end of Santa Monica pier, with friends and film crew, jammed amongst lots of tourists. A classic sandy beach with the ‘Baywatch’life guard stations to your left and right; a rough voiced gentleman singing the blues along with the squawking gulls. I had to try to catch Rob on the camcorder as he made his way down the pier to reach the end, capturing his turn around as to re-create Forrest Gump but it was all just too busy with people and the news crew, and I suppose really, I wanted to see him finish, after all, I’d been there every running step of the way.
I have driven, cooked, cleaned, waited, shouted, cried, waited, cleaned, driven, waited, not showered for days, filled petrol and food shopped on my own many times, waited, talked to myself, written blogs, cleaned, cooked, tweeted, instagrammed, driven, sent a million emails, cleaned, driven and cared. I have to be honest and say that I’m rather tired of it and I’m happy to be going home. I’m happy to not have to constantly worry about if Jenny’s going to fit into our next meeting spot or if we’ll find somewhere safe to pull up for the night. I’m tired of sitting and driving alone. I have been lacking in blogs recently as I have had so much company and I have been too engrossed in enjoying the respite to sit and write and it really has been fantastic to have our friends join us like they have; it made me realise how much time I had spent alone and by my own admission, I rather prefer it sometimes but of course, only when it suits me. So for me, this not being my ‘dream’, I’m really glad for the break and yes, it is just a break because although it isn’t my dream or my challenge, I can’t give up. Seeing Rob’s face on that final day, surrounded by friends and the overwhelming feeling of accomplishment, beaming with well deserved pride, I knew he would want to turn around and carry on. Just after he had finished, all stood around, chatting excitedly about it I looked down to his discarded ‘Forrest Gump’ Nike Cortex trainers and noticed a white feather, perfectly snuggled next to them. I asked Rob if he had done it on purpose to which he, as equally surprised by the scene, replied no. If you’re familiar with the film then you’ll understand the connection and it was that, that made us realise we should carry on.Watching his story on the local news later that evening (in a British style pub no less) and the crowd roaring with excitement, chanting ‘Robbie, Robbie, Robbie’ and having their photos taken with him, I knew he would feel he had to turn around and carry on.
Those who know Rob well, know that he will definitely carry on and I know that he could do so without me if I didn’t return. It would be more difficult but he would find some ingenious way but I couldn’t see him do it alone. I realised that along the way, with plenty of giggles, some shouting and tears, tons of shared moments, and stinking together, we actually make a really good team Rob and I. Team Gump.