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Lockdown Blog #24 - 'That's Gotta Hurt'

Well, life got in the way last week with family time so I was unable to write this blog in time for it to be published. So it's a week late and I apologise for this.

Here we are, another week (2 weeks now!) has gone by since my last blog. Not a lot has happened, the only thing that has changed is we bought a hot tub, just a CleverSpa, we aren’t that fancy, and I built a house for it, if you fancy having a look check it out on my Instagram page @acmdarren. 

Whilst watching Celebrity Gogglebox I noticed they had to watch a film called ‘127 hours’. When I saw this it reminded me of a book I had read while on holiday in Rhodes back in 2004. Whilst watching this programme It became more recognisable and the film was in fact the book ‘Between a Rock and a Hard Place’ by Aron Ralston.

I thought to myself, I did not know it was made into a film! Which is now on my watch list. This book is brilliantly written, funny, honest, inspiring, and an astonishing experience where death meets life.

Reading this book (I've read a few books in my life), its the most extraordinary survival story I’ve ever read. This guys account of six days trapped in one of the most remote spots in America, and how one inspired act of bravery (and gore) helped this guy survive.

It started out as a simple hike in Canyonlands National Park, Utah on a warm Saturday afternoon. Aron, a twenty seven year old (at the time) mountaineer and outdoorsman, a hike into the remote Blue John Canyon was a chance to get a break from a winter of solo climbing Colorado's highest and toughest peaks. He'd earned this weekend away, and though he met two women along the way, who invited him to a party (if I remember rightly), by early afternoon he finally found himself in his element: alone, with just the beauty of Gods creation all around him.

It was 2:41pm, eight miles from his truck, in a deep and narrow slot canyon, Aron was climbing down off a wedged boulder when the rock suddenly, and terrifyingly, came loose. Before he could get out of the way, the falling stone pinned his right hand and wrist against the canyon wall.

And so began six days of hell for Aron Ralston. With minimal water and little to no food, no jacket for the painfully cold nights, and the horrendous knowledge that he'd told NO ONE where he was heading, he found himself facing a lingering death, trapped by an 363kg boulder (the same as a fully grown inland brown bear) 100 feet down in the bottom of a canyon. As he eliminated his escape options one by one through the days, Aron faced the full horror of his predicament: By the time any possible search and rescue effort would begin, he'd most probably have died of dehydration, if a flash flood didn't drown him before that.

What would you do, in the face of almost certain death? 

Using the video camera from his backpack, Aron began recording his grateful good-byes to his family and friends all over the country, thinking back over a life filled with adventure, and documenting a last will and testament with the hope that someone would find it. 

His family and friends had started a major search for Aron, the amazing details you can read in his book.

The knowledge of their love kept Aron alive, until a divine inspiration on Thursday morning solved the riddle of the boulder. Aron then committed the most extreme act imaginable to save himself. But I am not going to tell you anymore because I would like you to either read the book (resource below) or check out the movie, which I am sure is really good.

So what is the underlining message here? 

Well its an easy one. What would you do? Would you do what Aron does and just keep trying to break free or do you just give up?

I am hoping you will read this book and be like Aron and no matter what is in your way you will just keep going. 


You have people around you who love you

People around you who care for you 

And you have people around you wanting you to succeed, in whatever you do.

So when you get stuck ‘between a rock and a hard place’, don’t just give up, KEEP GOING - you can do it!

With age, you see people fail more. You see yourself fail more. How do you keep that fearlessness of a kid? You keep going. Luckily, I’m not afraid to make a fool of myself.

 Hugh Jackman

Stay safe and remember don’t give up!


This week’s resource...

Book: Between a Rock and a Hard Place - Aron Ralston

About: The unforgettable survival story of the year -- the astonishing, day-by-day account of Aron Ralston's terrible accident, self-amputation, rescue and recovery. On Saturday, 26 April 2003, Aron Ralston, a 27-year-old outdoorsman and adventurer, set off for a day's hike in the Utah canyons. Eight miles from his truck, he found himself in the middle of a deep and remote canyon. Then the unthinkable happened: a boulder shifted and snared his right arm against the canyon wall. He was trapped, facing dehydration, starvation, hallucinations and hypothermia as night-time temperatures plummeted. Five and a half days later, Aron Ralston finally came to the agonising conclusion that anyone who was looking for him was not going to find him in time. He then made the most difficult decision of his life: his only hope was to amputate his own arm and get himself to safety. Miraculously, he survived. Between A Rock And A Hard Place is more than just an adventure story. It is a brave, honest and above all inspiring account of one man's valiant effort to survive, and is destined to take its place among adventure classics such as Touching The Void

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