Welcome to the official blog for Raleigh India 12I | July - August 2012

Welcome to the Official Blog for Raleigh India 12J September - December 2012.

Thursday 10 November 2011

Tango 5

Guest blogger Lee here!

I have just got back from an amazing six days with tango five trekking in Kerala. This blog is an update for you all.

Day one:

We all got up bright and early and after eating some bread wrapped in omelette for breakfast and left field base on our four hour journey into Kerala. After a quick stop at one of the coffee shops along the way we arrived at our destination around 11:00 ready to begin trekking. We had a brief introduction from the Muddy Boots guys and then embarked on our first day of trekking. 

The trek was 6km through a tea plantation where we got to see some amazing views and eat our lunch undercover in a locals’ shed. We arrived at camp shortly after lunch and put up our tents, made our group shelter and then prepared dinner; tuna, pasta with sweet corn. Due to the rain and not being used to trekking we hit the sack quite early.

Day two: 

Today was our first proper morning of trek. We woke up early and set off on a 7km trek through some more tea plantations and arrived at our camp just in time for lunch. Our camp for the night was a watch tower used by the forestry agency, it had all the mod cons; western toilet, western shower... that was about it. After lunch we walked a further 2.2km to a heart shaped lake. After the walking was leech care time. I managed to pull 13 of them out of one sock! We stayed in a watch tower for the night and crammed 8 people into one room whilst the PM’s and Dan slept in tents up on the roof.

A double rainbow!

Day three:

We got a bit of a lie in this morning as there were only two tents to pack away; 6:30. After a good night’s sleep at the watch tower we set off on an 11.8km trek. The trek wasn’t too hard and we were rewarded with a chai stop at the end of the day. We had our first really good campsite as well, we got to set up our group shelter properly, wash in the river and pitch out tents with a bit of space! The weather turned in the evening and a couple of people were woken up by the thunder.

Day four:

Early start this morning! We had a 14km trek to get through! It was really good seeing the team pull together to help each other out on our first long day of trekking. Again, we were treated to some amazing views and waved on by a number of locals as we walked through their villages. Our campsite was in a coffee plantation where we pitched our tents on concrete rather than grass. There was an elephant nearby and a chance for chai. 

Day five:

We had a massive lie in this morning and were joined by Hannah for rafting. The group had to build their own rafts and then float down the river with the guides steering them. All in all a relaxing day! The weather held up so we all got to work on our tans. Probably the best thing about the day was lunch. It was from a restaurant! Everyone agreed it was much better than rice bags. The afternoon was pretty chilled and consisted of chai and sorting out the next five days food. 

Day six:

My last day with tango 5! Today was the groups first cycling day – they had 40km to cover during the day over mixed terrain. Everyone was kitted out with a good bike and helmet and we were followed by a tuk tuk and a jeep which held our water. The cycling was really good and it was another day where the group really mucked in to help each other out on the challenging bits. Unfortunately I had to leave at midday to be back at field base before dark but when I got back I heard that they had all completed the cycling!! 

That’s it from me. Keep checking the blog for updates for the other groups.



  1. Gemma Bennett - Tango 5

    Hi Gem, Well where do i begin?
    The Risk and Johnny got voted off Xfactor last weekend. Frankie then got kicked off xfactor on tuesday. I'm A Celeb Starts On Sunday I will post blogs daily letting you no what is happening on it. Dougie from mcfly is going in. Everyone at home is good, suffering from colds and coughs but whats new with our house. Mum and Dad still practising their Jiving. Bonfire night went well. Daves Fire too big as usual, nothing new their. LOL. You are still looking really happy and as if your are enjoying yourself. The picture of you on the raft is great. Looks like your right at home on the water. Cant believe we are nearly half way through. Lots of people following you now.

    Love from all here.


  2. For Zoe Coles, Tango 5

    Just logged on and are delighted to see the Guest Blog. It's been a long week for us, waiting to hear the news, but probably a lot longer for you! It sounds an amazing experience and we are sure you are enjoying it. Taid says '...told you we should have done the raft-building at Centre Parcs'!! Hope you survived the leeches and haven't any blisters. What a luxury to have a 'western' shower, they're spoiling you now. All is fine here, Gordon and Karin arrive tomorrow from France (bringing the Christmas wine). Everyone asks after you and are interested to know what you are doing. We hope your camera is working, can't wait to see all the photographs and hear first hand of all your experiences (could they rival the 'tales of the Salon'?) Nanna continues to go to Rock Choir every week and provides weekly entertainment for your mum's clients and facebook friends. Alun, Gemma and Eric are all fine. They are supposed to be decorating the apartment and have actually bought the paint, but that's as far as it's got, no doubt football will have got in the way! All for now, keep smiling (we know you will!). Lots of love, Nanna and Taid xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  3. petra van Walt Meijer10 November 2011 at 16:41

    to valerie van Walt Meijer tango 5
    Wow, wat prachtig is het daar dat maakt het wellicht net iets makkelijker om vol te houden geweldig om hier deel van te zijn lijkt me ik zou stiekum ook wel op zo'n avontuur willen.De foto's zijn echt prachtig en ik wordt heel blij om je zo vrolijk met je groep te zien.Heb met de moeder van juul geluncht was erg gezellig en bijzonder om onze dochters gemeenschappelijk in deze indiase expeditie te hebben.Lieve val ik ben erg trots op je en wens je nog een goede vervolg tocht met goede gezondheid en fun. blijf je volgen
    dikke kus, p

  4. Hi Anna,
    Will the photos look good when you are standing!!!!
    Sorry for the phone call today using up your mins will try to get up early tomorrow and phone my have to have lots of coffee of you can understand me but i will do it and be wake. Off to see James in abit I'll say hi and let you know how the flat is so far no damage.

    Love you babe

  5. Amelia Ayliffe Tango 5
    Hi Meems
    Lovely to hear news at last - trek sounds amazing. Were you very excited when they produced to get your old favourite meal of tuna and sweetcorn and more importantly did they have ketchup!! Glad to see you are taking no chances with your footwear - no leeches getting in there! Am starting to get very excited about you coming home - can't wait to see you. Jel says he is really missing you too. All our love xxx

  6. Hi Alex,

    Fantastic photos in the latest blog. Looks absolutely magical.

    However, I now see where my sandals went.


  7. Valerie - tango 5

    Woah dikkie wat een coole foto's! Je straalt helemaal en heb je al vaak kunnen vinden op foto's. Zelfs op de laatste lekker bezweet op de fiets:) Maar heel cool dat je ook hebt geraft en gefietst, is niet alleen maar lopen dus! Heb vanavond chinees huwelijk van een collega, dus ben benieuwd hoe dat is. Ben woensdag naar karen millen party launch geweest, was heel leuk champagne drinken met Lauren (meisje die ik heb ontmoet via onze achtertante in HK). Zal blijven reageren,Xxx

  8. To Anne - Charlie 1
    Hi Anne, we lezen net het verslag van de huidige Tango 5 compleet met foto's. we herkennen veel van jouw verhaal met fietstocht ed, maar zien ook de prachtige plaatjes onderweg en zelfs de tenten vlakbij een waterval staan. Het begint hier wel langzaam aan winter te worden met koude ochtenden. Ik was woensdag een dagje thuis, klein griepje en een gebroken verstandskies. Je zus heeft moeite met haar vrijdagen: 1e uur beginnen en dan 4 tussenuren; ze moet maar even doorbijten vind je niet? haar 1e rapport was erg goed met maar 1 absence melding, dat was vorig jaar nog 2 pages ...
    we zijn benieuwd of je onze post een beetje op tijd en gespreid krijgt, of sparen ze alles op?
    lieve groeten voor nu! papa en mamma.

  9. To alex and zoe in tango 5 !
    hello my long lost friends ! england is soo cold, however it isn't raining or muddy so thats good,i hope you's are doing okay out there on trek :) keep goinggg :) miss you's lots and lots !!!
    roz xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  10. For Daniel Rose

    Jesus Christ! look what uev seen, looks so beautiful out there. sitting on my bed watching family guy and eating a bacon sandwich. miss you.
    Love Robs.x

  11. For Lucy C. Hi Lucy! I hope you are having an amazing time building ecosanitation units! I am sure it will be hard work--but think of those arm muscles you'll be building! We haven't heard any updates about you since you left on this phase, but I have been imagining what it's like and thinking about you each day. I'll give you a little update on everything here--Mom came back from her trip to Germany, they had a fantastic time and now they are in Nashville for a few weeks before Thanksgiving; Stuart and I celebrated our 3rd anniversary on Tuesday, we are going to NYC today for the weekend, we will be seeing the Rockettes Christmas show and visiting with friends; SK is doing well, she is busy with school and getting involved with DAR; Dad has been traveling for work to NY and Houston; little Pete is doing well--he will be staying with dad and SK this weekend for a little vacation of his own! We love you so much--can't wait to see more pictures and hear how things are going. xoxox, May May

  12. Amelia Ayliffe, Tango 5
    Hi, Meems, hope you are still enjoying yourself. The trekking looks great (except for leeches!). Not much to report here. I went to a good gig last night (Magazine) - but wouldn't have been your cup of tea - lots of old men reliving their youth! Talking of tea, it sounds like chai is one of the highlights of the day for your team - will you be taking it up when you get back? Harrie and Jellie have been winding each other up this week - he says she smells. He's also learned to text and now texts her friends (generally to tell them they stink too). Carol (Canada) came for supper earlier this week - it was good to see her and she sends her love to you. Mum and Joy are bumping along fine - it's been a generally "sunny" week. Granny is taking everyone (but me - it would be wasted on me!) to the Lion King on Sunday. Not long now until you come back. Can't wait to see you and hear about your adventures. Love, Dad etc

  13. for ANNA ROBERTS! (tango 5)

    hey lady.... hope your legs feeling better! went and booked my new tattoo today it will be finished by the time you get back... trying to get my essay finished too got 2 weeks left to hand it in arghhhh!
    keep thinking about you cant imagine what its like as much as i try!
    cant wait for you to come home!

  14. E. van Walt Meijer grandmother12 November 2011 at 02:53

    To Valerie van Walt Meijer Tango 5
    Grandmother van Walt Meijer said:
    Doordat ik iedere dag kijk of er al weer nieuws is zag ik onmiddellijk Tango 5 report en belde Petra. We delen samen je belevenissen. Je ziet er vrolijk uit op de foto's, ooit was je émailadres happy Valerie, dat ben je nu geloof(hoop)ik ook ondanks zware inspanningen. Enorme ervaring. Begrijp ik dat je een olifant zag? Mijn leven is in vergelijking daarmee saai,lekker "rustig" in mijn rolstoel, maar ook weer niet, want boeiend door de gerapporteerde belevenissen van Q en jou te volgen. Geniet van alles, en uiteindelijk is het voor het welzijn van indiase mensen. liefs Omi.

  15. For Anna Roberts,

    Hi Sweety, how you doing hope you are feel better! for some reason can't get though to you, must have tried about 50 times! Your flat is still standing some already has their xmas lights up. Mum and dad are packing it's crazy here can not wait for them to go. nearly finished assign 8 hoping to be done when you get back then you can go celebrated I'm thinking cocktails and McDonald's. Well I'm going to go and then try and call again & again & again & again & again I will get though!!!!!!!

    Love you babe get better and get trekking lazy bum!
    Love Ruth XXXXX

  16. Gemma bennett tango 5
    Hi Gem Now you are half way in and half way out it looks amazing and the photos are really excellent to see THANKS TO ALL THE STAFF WHO KEEP BLOGGING hope that you are having the most amazing time seeing lots doing lots and having lots of fun with your team.
    All here is about the same mum working toooooooo many hours and still bringing work home( no change there) we ar all missing you and we are looking forward to seeing you in december. will blog again soon.
    love you lots
    mum and dad and sam.

  17. Gemma Bennett Tango 5
    Hi Gemma,
    It sounds like your having lots of fun. We can't believe your half way through already! I have just been reading all about the treking and cycling you have been doing, well done.
    Keep up the good work and look after yourself.
    Love Lisa, Kev & family xxx

  18. For Anna Roberts (Fieldbase or Tango 5)
    Hi Anna,
    Hope you're feeling better, perhaps you're even back on the trek by now, but know doubt we'll hear about it soon. Will send you a letter with new luggage labels and other information for the extra week. I must make sure it leaves here asap to make sure you receive it in time. Your dad's still got a trapped nerve in his neck which is very painful, so he's really struggling at the moment. How lucky you are missing all the 'Christmas Hype' If I have to walk into one more Westfield shop that's playing Christmas music I'll scream!! I expect the next thing I'll see is Santa and the elves taking up residence outside 'Stuff-a-Bear'. Give me strength!! Hope to get a 'leg' update soon. Take care.
    Love you loads Mum & Dad xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  19. For Veerle Engel, Echo 3
    Lieverd, zolang niets gehoord en ben zoo benieuwd naar jullie belevenissen en verhalen! Hoop dat er deze week weer nieuws over jullie is en dat ik ergens een beetje beeld van jou op kan vangen. Vind je nu wel heel ver weg! Als je terug bent op FB denk je dat we dan een keer kunnen skypen, sms me een dag/tijd, kunnen we elkaar even zien en horen. Lijkt me heerlijk! Hier alles goed, niet zoveel nieuws. Klinkt enorm saai nu plots, naast jouw spannende leven! Het is echt herfst hier en begint koud te worden, je mist niets! Proefwerkweek voor de tweeling, "hard" aan het werk dus! Pietje nog steeds ok! Weet dat we veel aan je denken en ons geregeld voorstellen hoe je daar zit en bent! Enorme omhelzing en alle liefs, mama

  20. Amelia Ayliffe - Tango 5

    Hi Amelia

    Hope you're still enjoying your time in India. But I bet you can't wait to be back soon! (your mum is counting the days)

    Me and Harrie had a bit of a date day yesterday, we went to discover dogs. Knowing us, you know we had a great time cuddling all the cute doggies (especially the cavalier king charles spaniels) Coming home from that, we were quite disappointed when we saw Marley again.

    There's not much to report here really, everything's basically the same (apart from my weekend frolics but I will fill you in when you're back which will be soon thank god)

    Oh I managed to knock myself out last night with my laptop. My forehead was bleeding and I have a scar. Typical... this could only happen to me haha.

    We're looking forward to your return and a shepherd's pie will be waiting for you.

    xxx Joy

  21. p.s. Frankie Cocozza left the X factor (due to drug abuse) and was replaced by Amelia Lily. Jonny and the risk had to leave last week. Oh and One direction performed on the results show last night - you would have loved to see your favourite Harry!

  22. For Daniel Rose - tango 5

    News for you! looks like seans going to be moving into our house in 2 weeks, he got a job down at the retail park, hes now an oxfordian. Looks like mookes isnt coming, YET! were taking all of yoouuuu. Hope you have a fantastic birthday wen it comes up, i was going to try and get down to watford and speak on skype to you but its a no can do, sorry. Im sure ul have a fantastic one there. I love you.
    Always. Love robyn XXX

  23. For Zoe Coles, Charlie 2

    Hi Zoe, hope you are still well and enjoying the experience. We are all counting the days until you come home, but no one more than your mum and dad. Here I go again, tears straight to my eyes - what a wet I am!!!

    Rach and Dani are out at work so the house is lovely and peaceful. What is rare is wonderful.

    We spent last Saturday night at your house. Your mum had a few girlies around, we will fill you in when your are back.

    Well my Xmas shopping is nearly finished and yours is wrapped already. I get so excited for the special man's visit!!! Plus all of the partying that follows on!

    Really looking forward to seeing my beautiful goddaughter. Feels like ages since we were in the Glasfryn. Anyway only 8 days now until your home, not that we are counting he he! Take care and lots of love from us all in the Pritchard house (even Jac) xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  24. Alex Rolfe tango 5
    Hey alex
    Am so pleased your doing the treck I no thats what you wanted and have looked at the blog it looks right up your alley (lots of excercise)
    Had a nice shopping day with your mum and sister and then went back to yours for dinner everyone is doing great and got a very warm welcome especially from little maddie who ran up to me we had a cuddle and then she looked straight behind me looking for you. Bless. As you can see from the blog comments your dad has realised you stole his sandals lol I talked him round your welcome :) oh and I apologised for using up all your credit they understood love your family.
    I must say we all loved the pose in the jumping photo you look like a ninga. Oh and are looking awsome in the hat. Also noticed you had a shave lol was hoping you would have a beard long enough to braid hehe. Only 7 weeks till I see you can't wait!
    So glad your having an amazing time
    Miss and love you loads
    Lots of love
    Ellis xxxxx

  25. Well done Lee for your words and photos.

    Alex and Judith

  26. Clare,

    Hope the trek is going well. Don't like the sound of leeches much! Hope your medic skills are not in high demand. Lots of love Mum and Dad

  27. Amelia Ayliffe - Tango 5
    just to let you know how closely I am watching the news and photos of your trip. The landscape looks stunning and do hope you are enjoying everything - despite the leeches! and hopefully no crocodiles! We nearly all (10 of us) went to Lion King on Sunday - it was brilliant. It reminded me of when I took you and Harrie to the odd show when you were little -particularly when we had that badtempered lady next to us at Peter Pan and Harrie started off her flashing ball before the interval!!
    Can't believe you will be coming home soon and do look forward to seeing you and hearing all.
    lots of love. GrannieLiz
    ps just won the golf Grannie's Cup!

  28. to julie scheer, tango 5
    haaaa mn allrliefste!!! ik heb net je brief gelezen die je echt 3 weken geleden hebt gestuurd! arme schat wat was je zielig. hoop zo erg dat je nu wel waanzinnig hebt met allemaal leuke mensen! kan echt niet wachten tot ik weer wat van je hoor! heb net wel de blog bekeken en ziet er heel vet uit naan! je ziet er gelukkig vrolijk uit op de foto's. Wat geinig dat iedereen naar groningen wil! heel gezellig!! sprak jasmijn en die zei dat haar zusje t eerst ook niet leuk vond! hier alles heel goed! in groningen alles echt top! mega veel feesten en gezelligheid, kermesse komt er ook al bijna aan! was dit weekend naar amsterdam, heel gezellig met pap en mam en rut uit eten geweest. Rut heeft de marathon gerend zo knap!! daarna naar de verjaardag van ee gegaan, heel leuk om weer iedereen uit den haag te zien! mn schat! ik hoop dat je het nu waaanzinnig hebt! als je terug bent gaan we lekker naar zermatt om te skieen. ik wil nu naar india vliegen om je de allerdikste knuffel te geven! love you sooo much! volgend jaar lekker samen in groningen! de nieuwe zijn nog steeds echt waaanzinnig! en tom is nog steeds in the picture, we hebben maandag een gala zo leuk. 100000 dikke zoenen van je zus! xxxxxx

  29. Amelia Ayliffe - TANGO 5

    from following this blog and looking at the pictures it looks like youre having an AMAZING time!!!

    i miss you very much and cant wait for you to hurry home to tell me all your wonderful stories.

    In other news, i got a job with off to work and have my first shift tomorrow SO NERVOUS!! the plan for australia is pretty much sorted but me and your mum have decided to wait till you get home before booking anything.

    lots of love and SEE YOU SOON!!! Ali xxxxxxxxx

  30. Clare,
    Looks like you're having a fabulous time - what a brilliant thing to do, I'm so jealous! I can't work out what I did with your address, but will write as soon as I find it...
    Lots of love,

  31. Valerie van Walt meijer: Tango 5

    heeee lieve val!
    hoe is het met je? ik heb eindelijk uitgevonden dat je in deze groep zit en hoe ik iets kan posten, dus gelukkig lukt het nu! wat ziet het er allemaar super gaaf uit, volgens mij heb je het onwijs naar je zin! heb net een leuk mailtje naar je gestuurd dus als je eindelijk weer op internet mag in de bewoonde wereld dan heb je iets leuks om te lezen! ben benieuwd naar al je verhalen!
    Denk aan je en mis je heeeel erg
    x x x x liefs lou

  32. Lucy C., just know that we think of you ever day and the adventures you must be having. As Mary Elliott said earlier, I've been very busy with business. All is going well. Sara Katherine is excelling in her interior design classes -- just as we knew that she would. I've made all of the appointments that you asked for wisdom teeth, doctor, and hair. Love you very very much, Daddy

  33. Omi van Walt Meijer17 November 2011 at 15:36

    Valerie van Walt Meijer, Tango 5

    Hee Valerie, ik heb je kaart ontvangen,bedankt! super en geweldig voeren de boventoon, blijkbaar ondanks dat je af en toe moet afzien. Raften,fietsen,lopen, valt dat laatste mee en is er geen infectie meer? Fase 2 loopt ten einde,afwachten wat fase 3 wordt. Ben benieuwd welk werk je het meeste voldoening geeft. Je zou eigenlijk tzt terug moeten gaan om te kijken of jullie inzet blijvend resultaat heeft gehad. Gezien het sóórt projecten
    lijkt me dat wel kans van slagen te hebben. Als de bevolking tenminste ook maar aan onderhoud doet.
    Ziet daar Raleigh Int. ook op toe?
    Hier mist en vochtig koud weer, zijn we ooit tevreden? Post is kwa tijd niet erg haalbaar meer, ik blijf comments sturen.
    veel liefs, Omi.

  34. Amelia Ayliffe, Tango 5
    it's anna... again.... lol... music and lyrics was on itv tonight, you know the one with hugh grant and ummm that woman... drew barrymore i think? i swear we saw it in the cinema together? or it's one of the crap films we rent, haha. you know the one? hugh grant has that song like... "POP goes my heaaaart" you better remember it's hilarious, i made one of my flatmates, james, watch it with me, but then we gave up at like 1am cos we were exhausted and it's not actually a very good film, although obviously i love bad films, but it's not the same without you blathering through it with me! no one here comments on everything while watching tv, they tell me to be quiet or just ignore me!!!!!!!!!! (well actually ellie comments but it doesn't make much sense and she doesn't listen to others comments)
    you know a coach booked only like a few days in advance to leeds from london is only like £6 each way, so hopefully you'll be able to come up even though you didn't book it, if no, we're home only like 2 weeks after anyway.
    I CANT WAIT TO HAVE YOU IN THIS COUNTRY and easily contactable! i can't believe you're going to australia after this... URGH, but atleast then you'll have skype, s'all good :) xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  35. For Anna Roberts
    Hi Anna, Hope you managed to join one of the other groups for the last part of the 2nd project and that your leg is ok now. Wonder what your last project will be? Miserable cold wet weather here, you'll really feel the difference when you get off the plane at Heathrow. Have sent you letters and emails with your new travel details in. Still waiting for my Indian post card to put on the fridge!!!
    Love you - Mum & Dad xxxxxxx

  36. Omi van Walt Meijer24 November 2011 at 03:00

    to Valerie van Walt Meijer Charlie 1
    Hi Valerie, zag net dat je nu in Charlie 1 zit. Nou ja, zitten? het is weer werken geblazen. Volgens Petra sanitaire voorzieningen bouwen. Praktisch gezien een ervaring die nooit weg is. Maak er iets moois van,deze levensperiode zal je nooit vergeten.
    Ik blijf het bijzonder vinden dit uit de verte mee te beleven. Zaterdagavond naar hotel NY, we zullen je missen. Maar we halen het in !! liefs, Omi.