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RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014 Blogs

Stage 5
05-Sep-2014 09:04:50 AM [(GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi]

How I would like to conclude this Long March is ‘A Solitude Night’. Victor and I completed 77Km in 20.5 hours. With the experience of Trailwalker, we understand how important is to pace ourselves well. We agreed not to stay for too long at overnight checkpoint; Otherwise, it’ll be difficult to turn on the engine. We were very patience with the never ending markers along the road. In the day, we passed through the Grey Tsingy Reserve which is formed by coral and erosion. Luckily, we saw a lemur and some birds in this wetland. Around 5pm, the twilight was full of my favourite colour – orange, pink, light and dark blue.

I didn’t feel too exhausted after this day. Perhaps my body get used to the multi-day exercise. Stretching day and night have helped me to recover faster. However, I got two more blisters after crossing two rivers in the dark last night. I changed into flip flops while crossing it. Unfortunately, after Victor reminded me to beware of losing the slipper as the current is quite fast, by the moment I stepped on land, I couldn’t get hold of my left flip flop and seeing it went with the current. At the camp, I was wearing a sock and a flip flop. What an odd feeling. Thankful to a volunteer who gladly lend me his slippers to save my foot for two more days. It’s better than losing my hiking shoes. It’s disgusting touching my pony tail as hard as a paint brush; seeing my fingertips full of soil; touching my chapped sole of my foot.

We kept a constant pace during the day. My pace started to slow down a lot after taking some hot food and drinks at overnight checkpoint around 7;30pm. We stayed for half an hour. My right sole felt discomfort when hitting the concrete pave each step. By reaching 9pm, I started to feel sleepy, wandering left and right. Victor was trying to wake me up by telling his life stories and he was about to sing if story telling didn’t work. Ha. For this 12Km, we spent a long time of 4 hour. In my mind, I know that I really need to use my will power to overcome my fatigue body; Otherwise, we would need to expose under the sun the next day if we couldn’t get back to camp by morning. I put on Deep Cold Gel on my ankle, massage a bit. Legs were relief. I played my favourite Celine Dion album. Suddenly, I changed to an electric rabbit. We reached 10K in 1;45mins; another 8.7K in 1;45mins under glowing stars. We finally reached at camp by 4;30am while most competitors had been resting. Around 20 competitors were behind us still. These few days, around 30 competitors have dropped out from the course. We feel blessed that we made through till today and are able to enjoy the scenery.

We are resting at camp today and chilling out. The last competitor arrived to camp at 12;30pm with a painful expression. It was remarkable to see how they struggled the last 30K under the sun after walking for 20 hours with a sportsmanship spirit. One even sprained her arm. It was touching to see a couple proposed to one another once they crossed the finishing line today.

To Dad – The mosquito band and stickers you got me are effective. I didn’t get much bites. So I can rest peacefully at night. After stretching for more than a week day and night, I can easily touch my toes while standing and do full forward bend while seating.

To Mom – I look so much forward seeing you and Dad at the airport ad have a good meal together. I will watch out for the final 10K distance tomorrow.

To Shirley – Thanks for sharing the motivating song. Sorry that other websites are blocked. I will listen to it when I get back.

To Connie and Martin – I look forward to our gathering too. I appreciate your initiative.

To Jay – You are right about the bottle with Perpetuem. I can’t accept the awful smell after using it for 4 days. It tastes weird too. I’m using my emergency water container.

2 COMMENTS

Patrick Ho

Posted: 06-Sep-2014 11:17:23 AM

Dear Natalie, Don't put too much word to waste ur time to read. Feeling so proud of you and I am sure you will complete it! Stay safe and looking forward to go summer outing with you on Sept 10! All the best, Patrick

Natalie Yiu

Posted: 06-Sep-2014 03:39:48 AM

Congratulation to three of you, all completed long March of 77km. Unbelieveable. I am so happy to receive your blog, I thought you won't have time to write any, need to sleep a lot. Did you take a good rest this morning? Today is your last day of activity, it should be easier with the last 10km, enjoy your goodbye party with the group. We will pick you up at the airport on 9/8 Monday. I forgot the flight number and arrival time (I can't find your folder), please tell me again if you have chance. Natalie. 加油! fighting! 目標在望,一氕呵成! Lulu Go Natalie go! Frank and Lily (above Uncle/Aunt gave the cheers for you before your long march because I passed your blogs to them to view) Reading through your last blog, knowing the difficulty but it's good that you have the Trailwalker experience through these years and you have strong will to keep you up to finish the line at a challenge country. Thanks to Victor to encourage by your side and help you. Enjoy you last two days in Madagascar. (the most dangerous 80km is over) Welcome home in Hong Kong soon. love mom/dad ....9/6/2014

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NATALIE YIU
RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014

Hometown
Hong Kong

Profession
HR Officer at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong.

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NATALIE YIU
RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014 competitor

Bio

I"ve worked for Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong for 8 years, rotating from different departments and land on Human Resources field within the hotel. I enjoy working in the hospitality industry as you get to meet lots of interesting people. We get to travel to stay at other FS properties to taste the experience as a guest. So we learn to "treat others as you would like to be treated". I studied Hospitality and Tourism Management in Toronto.

Hometown
Hong Kong

Profession
HR Officer at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong.

Why are you competing?
For a new challenge and to learn more about
myself, test my limits and tolerant.

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