Yesterday was a sad moment waving off all the lovely individuals we have had the pleasure to meet on expedition 11E. They have all achieved so much during their time here in India and we hope the memories that they have made here will stay with them for a lifetime, we wish them luck with what they go on to do after Raleigh.
The venturers left here at lunchtime yesterday: some were heading home, some have decided to stay here in India to travel onwards and the chicken which was brought back from Echo 4 has now become a permanent resident here at field base – she is currently clucking in the office looking for either food or attention, both of which she is a big fan of.
The majority of the venturers headed off on the bus to Bangalore and spent the night in a dormitory on the outskirts of Bangalore, PMs Donks, Lindsay, Catherine and Lou accompanied them to ensure they got there safely. The group had one final stop off at Coffee Day to fortify themselves with cake and coffee before arriving at their dormitory for the night. Apparently not much sleep was achieved as the group was far more interested in chatting to each other than sleeping.
Everyone who was flying this morning got on their flights, so don’t worry nobody has been left behind. The airport PMs returned here to field base at lunchtime and we are all busy putting field base to rights again after the mayhem of wash up – a sign of a good time.
I thought I would leave you with some of my favourite photos from expeditions and a little something from Catriona. Thank you all for getting involved and sending messages to loved ones and friends who have been out here with us.
For the final time from expedition 11E this is field base listening out.
A little Reminder of Raleigh 11E - By Catriona Duncan
There is something unique about Raleigh
To be the change you want to see
I became a Raleigh 11E venturer
Left to embrace India’s culture and food
Stripped of daily comforts from the start it felt hardcore
Challenged physically and mentally you can’t go on anymore
Out on the community, trek or environmental phase, one does wish
To have access to the internet and phone to hear how much you are missed
Although fieldbase do their best giving out treats and notes on the loop
This can bring tears of joy and trigger a list of the first things we need to do
When we finally make that journey home and spend time remembering when:
Home from home was camp in the middle of nowhere or a rural village
And you realise that success was determined by eight conditions:
Food came from the locals or from a tin yet it was all for survival
Sleeping was treasured on a comfy basha rather than a soaking wet tent
Water was of equal value after working or trekking for miles
Friendships were made with others who would inspire and challenge you
Family from home were missed but you loved the locals like one too
Technology you swapped for good company, conversations or cards
Privacy or rather the lack of it proved challenging when getting dressed
Education though was something of value and I know I am blessed
Simply being there Raleigh has taught me to appreciate eight things
Without a doubt the 7 week expedition has been my best moment yet
I still regret not staying but I have given myself time to reflect
And believe the accomplishments on Raleigh take a while to sink in
I sometime pinch myself that I did Get Out There and strive
But I owe it to the Raleigh Team at Fieldbase in India since we arrived
A big thank you to Mark and Jules as the in country team
For making it happen and helping to create dreams
For the local villages where Raleigh works and for venturers like me
For the Project Managers, you know who you are
Thank you for bringing out the best in me
You are all inspiring people and great leaders
To the rest of the Logs and Comms teams
Thank you for being there when we called and said hello zero
This is Catriona in the UK calling zero for one last time
I have no idea what you are all doing but I hope this shows
That I loved the experiences of Raleigh India 11E
And to my fellow venturers and friends
Welcome home and well done!
This is Catriona listening out – over