I was asked to participate in a Night of Adventure in aide of the charity www.hopeandhomes.co.uk
500 people payed £20 a head at the Vue Cinema in Leicester Square to listen to 14 adventurers speak for 400 seconds each – we raised £8,500 for kids. If you watch all these presentations and enjoyed them then perhaps you could consider bunging £5 or $10 in an envelope and posting it to
Hope and Homes for Children
take a look at their website and see what they do
As a public speaker the format is both wonderful and terrifying. You send the organisers 20 slides ahead of time which they put into a powerpoint program. Wach slide stays on the screen for 20 seconds before changing to the next. If you fall behind you will never catch up.
It means that the talks whip along beautifully and you can never get bored. There were some wonderful speakers and some really impressive adventurers. I have to say that although we are high energy focussed people I am not sure that many of us will ever get, or deserve, decent jobs. I think they would just settle into a job for the winter and come the longer days decide to drift off on an adventure.
Needless to say I was the oldest contributor and probably did the smallest distance out of any of them. But I am 58 now and have done some big adventures in the past and have nothing to prove to anyone.
I did the event last year – nominated by one of the KTL subscribers. This year the excellent Al Humphries, who was organising it, put me up last. Quite an honour, although as I had promised to film the event it made the logistics a lot easier.
If you want to embed one of the talks in your website or blog open the film in youtube, click on the share button, then the embed button and the html code will come up. You can set the size of the player by clicking the size in the boxes and it will automatically create the code. The little films on the menus are 200 pixels.
Here are the talks:
After last year’s talk some-one on twitter mentioned the crazy small boat man – must have been talking about some other bloke.
brian has now sailed over 500,000 miles and specialises in very big boats paid for by other people – which is a pretty good trick if you can pull it off. He must have more logoed gear than the average foru mla one driver. He can clearly work alone but is also the ultimate team player and a very impressive man. He has sailed at 31 knots – aaaagh!
Paul gave a wonderful and extremely witty talk. His journey came about as a result of three drinking friends deciding to go for it. It took them over a year and they clocked up £80,000 on the meter. Good on em I say. Sounds like a real hoot.
You only have to meet these two charming Irishmen for a minute before you would do all you could to help them. Just a few moments spent in their presence makes you fall in love with their energy, their drive and their humour. They would make wonderful travelling companions. Thier enthusiasm is infectious and just being with them makes you smile.
They have spent the past five years crossing Asia, yakking about it, blagging money for the next stage and having a real ball.
Mike Hall is a most remarkable bloke. Round the World in 91 days – just think about that for a second. Amazing.
He used to cycle until very late at night and then turn in – he slept wherever he could. Toilets became a speciality. He really knows how to cut back on luggage. Masterful.
Simon has that delighful Eeyore mentalisty of any fan of a lower division football club. His chosen form of self abuse is to follow York City. He decided that he would cycle to all their mtaches in one season – wherever they were being held. Cycling in the winter to Barrow in Furness or Eastbourne means that this man has several loose screws. He turns self deprecation into an art form. He is a witty, lovely man.
Emily Chappell is a former London cycle courier who decided to cycle around the World one bit at a time. She is one amazing traveller – feisty, determined and charming. Woman’s Hour should do a feature on her because she has some really interesting perspectives on being a woman and travelling solo.
Bradley Garret is a really impressive chap with real balls. His slides were easily the best of the night – every one was beautifully shot. He understands light and composition. He and a group of friends are urban explorers who find their way into all sorts of unused places where the authorities would prefer them not to go. He is quetly spoken Californian but is currently an academic at Oxford and self confessed Anglophile. His ‘exploring’ activities have meant that he has attracted the attention of the police and in a recent dawn raid had all his hard disks and his passport impounded. His legal bills are phenomenal – but his story is wonderful.
Ian Packham is quiet and unnasuming young fellow. Slight of frame and urbane He spent 15 months travelling right around the coast of Africa using public transport. Mini-buses, trucks, small boats. He is clearly a resourceful, self contained and determined traveller. All round a most admirable fellow and I am really looking forward to his book. It should be an inciteful and perceptive read.
Tommy is a tough young bloke with a will of iron. He is just 23 but psychologically as robust as a man twice his age. He has a real determination to see things through. This bloke will go far- as far as he wants.
Lev Wood is ex parachute regiment and a natural leader. His has adventured all over the World but this is a talk about taking a small party of people across Madagascar. Never been done before apparently. He started out with 13 people – four made it to the end. I would follow him anywhere. He has a great story about pants.
Al Humphries is a brilliant public speaker and master of the micro adventure. He has done the big stuff of course – ridden a bike around the world and dragged what he describes as a shopping torlly across the empty quarter. But he is also a mad keen wild swimmer and now that he is a family man spends his time going on micro-adventures that take him for a walk around the M25 or a quicky to Wales or the very top of Britain by bike and inflatable. He organised the evening and is a really, really nice man who oozes uber charm.
Nothing puts this bloke off.Weather, jungles, mountains all there to be overcome. He is seriously afflicted with adventure lust and if he can find a hard thing to do then he is up for it. Having spent a couple of weeks riding horses he has decided that is the way to travel and is going to ride 2,500 kms. Brave boy.
Arita is a most remarkable woman who has fallen hopelessly in love with the desert. She has spent many years exploring these strangely alluring places on camels. She gave a talk explained how much she loves the arid parts of this planet but also told us how things can so easily go wrong.