1 July 2019.

"Wow! I was minding my own business at home when my wife said that “Jane from Mont Blanc Treks or something like that is on the phone”. Thinking it was going to be some sort of hard sell on a hiking holiday, I answered the phone curtly: “yes?”

Jane from Mont Blanc Treks reminded me I’d entered a competition to win a Haute Route trip... I vaguely recalled entering - I vaguely recalled thinking, “I won’t win, but what the Hell”

Apparently, I’d won! There is such a thing as a free lunch; well, no free lunches, but breakfasts and dinners and accommodation…and bag transfers…and a guide! All I’d need to do is to get myself to Chamonix and from Zermatt. Wow!

I was shocked and not a little concerned that I’d be fit enough (I do hike quite a bit and I am going to be hiking over the Pyrenees (north to south) the last week in July, but even so, I know the Haute Route encompasses some ‘big’ days). And I needed to start thinking about flights!! Time for a coffee!

I also needed to tell my wife who, thankfully, is very understanding about me disappearing for periods of time (I had a full career in the Royal Air Force, so she got used to me going away for extended periods.)"

(Photo by Jake Ingle on Unsplash)