Progress So Far

I thought it about time that I gave you an update of the progress of a few of the items on my fifty list.  It seems like a slow start but behind the scenes I have been arranging, sorting dates, obtaining prices and trying to work at the same time.  It’s been fun though!

Scuba Dive

When I posted the web address of the 50 list on Facebook my long-time friend Mark Harris contacted me and made me and my family a most generous offer.  He has invited us out to his house in Italy to go Scuba diving with him and two instructors.  This will be most likely planned for the beginning of June.  I am so looking forward to that.

Travel near 170 mph in a quarter mile

Santa Pod are arranging for me to hitch a ride in one of their dragsters.  It accelerates up to 100mph in about 2 seconds and at 7 seconds is close to 170mph.  This will be happening at the end of April if all goes to plan.

Thrill Ride - Twin Seater Dragtser
Thrill Ride – Twin Seater Dragtser

Lose weight

This is going to be an on-going task and one that I’m sure will be difficult.  I don’t mind eating healthily, in fact I love a good warm chicken salad or mackerel salad with really peppery leaves and a good dollop of pesto. Of course healthy food must go hand in hand with excersise and may be this is one area that I have yet to excel in but this week I’m going to get back into the swing of things again.  I have to if I am to be ready the half marathon that I have entered on the 11th March, another one of my 50 activities.

Adidas Silverstone Half marathon

Write a book

I have been working on the first two chapters and this will be on-going throughout the year.  So far I have concentrated on the disability and how it has affected me over the years, from when it was first diagnosed up to today.  I wouldn’t say it was easy, trying to remember things that happened near 40 odd years ago in chronological order is not easy as it all seems to be jumbled up in my head.  Though I have found it to be very therapeutic writing my experiences down.

Get one of my photos printed in a national paper

So far I have only managed to get one of my photos published in a local paper and I didn’t have too much to do with that.  Obviously the image had a lot to do with it.  You see I had entered the photo into a photo competition run by the Disabled Photographers Association, in conjunction with Calumet Photographic.  The topic was called ‘On the Move’.  So far it’s been in a gallery in London, Printed in the local newspaper and will appear on show at the ‘Focus on Imaging’ exhibition at the NEC in mid-March.  Members of the judging panel included Damien Demolder, editor of Amateur Photographer.

The winning photo


Teach someone to balance on two wheels in wheelchair

It’s not that difficult to teach someone to balance on two wheels.  So far two people have successfully managed to pull and hold a wheelie in my chair.  Photographs will follow but at the time we were all dressed up enjoying the champagne at a New Years party.  This will be on-going and I will be posting photos of amateur wheelchair balancing soon.

Complete 1000 piece jigsaw

Yes, I know I said a 5000 piece jigsaw puzzle but it wasn’t the size that was going to challenge me but the small pieces and whether or not my lack of dexterity could actually put the puzzle together.  So, when a good friend of ours lent me a 5000 piece puzzle I soon realised that I didn’t have the room to make it!  So, It’s now a 1000 piece puzzle.  So far I have all the edges done!

Give a talk as a guest speaker

I have been invited by the Round Table to give a talk about my condition and experiences but this as yet to be booked in.

Bake bread on a regular basis

We have been making homemade bread nearly every day for the last couple of months now. And I say we because when I’m not making it my wife is.  Homemade bread is so much better than any shop bread in a plastic bag. However, I must admit the making of the bread is an easy task because we purchased a bread maker.  I do prefer to get in the dough and have a good squeeze but we have three kids that all like bread and have it in their pack lunch at school and it’s less time consuming than getting stuck in with your hands.

Making my business work

Slowly, very slowly I have got work coming in.  I have just put in motion an advertising campaign so hopefully I might get some leads coming through.  I’m now offering more services to give clients a full suite of web solutions so watch this space.

Sell the Mustang!!

So far I have had only one person look at the car and he offered me far less than I am asking for it.  So, for now I have taken the car off the road, removed the racing wheels and the battery and covered it up for the winter in hope that I can try and sell it before the National Drag Racing Championships starting in April.

Prepare a photo exhibition for 2013

I have been getting all my photographic equipment ready for the coming year plus I’m going to take a look at the photos that I have already in my galleries and start thinking about what sort of photos I want to show.   As for where they are going to be show, well, there’s a good chance I can get them shown in the local theatre or library.

Play more board games

This has been fun.  So far we have been playing monopoly and a new game called Logos.  It’s a game all about branding, products logos and marketing.  There’s going to be a curry board game night as well with a few friends coming round.

Visit the capital city of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland

This was once a single activity, not that I was going to do it all in one day.  The plan was to make the three visits over the next year but I decided that one journey is an activity in itself! So, I decided to split this into three separate activities as this is going to be one of the tougher activities to achieve.  Time, money and, thinking practically, assistance where I might need it, will be a factor I have to take into consideration. Obviously I had to remove two activities from the list. The zero gravity flight was always going to be difficult, but most likely the most enjoyable but the costs were just too much. The other activity I removed was ‘Become an extra in a soap opera or a film’, which I’m going to keep on the back burner as I still fancy having a go at being an extra.

Give blood

This was always going to be the one that I wouldn’t look forward to.  I have often admired people that go and give blood on a regular basis.  The problem with this activity is it’s the only one I won’t enjoy because I have a very irrational fear of needles.  I’ll be explaining the reason why in the book but let’s just say a bad experience when I was 7 years old has made me very reluctant to have a needle anywhere near me.  So this activity is more therapy than anything else.  I’m going to give blood for the first time on the 8th February.  I’ll keep you updated.

Go to the proms

Tickets go on sale at the beginning of March so there’s little I can say about this one just yet.  However, I will let you know what night I have bought tickets for when I get them.

Learn to make proper soup

There has been some soup making activity going on and so far I have perfected a good vegetable and chicken soup.  I have the recipe for a minestrone which I will be trying but there’s a few others I’d like to try and they are, pea & ham soup and Mushroom soup.