Friday 4 February 2011: On the Dark Side
This is a dark day indeed for his Lordship and me.
We heard this morning that one of our friends who was on a cycling tour of Cuba, has had a very bad accident and is in a critical condition in hospital there.
Her husband and son have flown out to be at her bedside, and according to her daughter-in-law who spoke to his Lordship this morning, things are not looking at all good.
This is a lady who ran with us in New York and London and cycled with us in South Africa and Vietnam.
She was the first woman to run a marathon in all seven continents and holds too many race prizes in her age group for me to count.
Her energy knows no bounds whether it's running, cycling, hill walking or painting but she is always very modest about her achievements.
We have regular lunches together with her and her husband where the hours fly past and we never stop talking.
To say that we are devastated is to underestimate the effect this news has had on us.
She has always been an inspiration to me with her enthusiasm for life and sport in particular, and I can't conceive of the fact of her not being around for the years ahead.
We are desperately hoping that the doctors are wrong and she will pull through.
We can't begin to confront the alternative.