Welcome to the first in a weekly series of blogs by Big Moose founder, Jeff Smith. Jeff compered Share Talk’s recent Investor’s Evening in Cardiff alongside the likes of Gervais Williams, Matt Bird, Chris Bailey, Elizabeth Gooch MBE, Joao Andrade, and George McDonaugh. The audience were blown away by Jeff’s enthusiasm for making the world a better place and it struck a chord with the entire room that night. We will be following Jeff’s journey here at Share Talk. PS – Jeff doesn’t use capitals!
how are you this fine morning?
hope doris hasn’t affected you too much?
for non-uk readers, we have had a hurricane named doris pay us a visit, and there’s nothing us brits like more than a good weather story, it keeps us talking for weeks.
weather stories, and queueing.
so doris aside, i hope your previous seven days have been good ones, and you’ve used them well, i’m sure you have. i truly would love to know what you’ve been up to, so if you have had any stand out moments drop me a line, you can inspire others with your good news, which in turn turns into positivity, it’s kinda like the polar opposite of what our traditional news media do, think about it, done some cool stuff, share it, the world wants to know, it really does. the coffee grains at the bottom of my cup signify joe 2 is imminent, back in 180 seconds.
my second cup of fresh columbian is now smelling delicious, and i inhale the waft of freshly ground roasted beans as the first of my senses is stimulated, and as i sip the hot stimulant, and the richness slides down my throat, taste plays it’s role in this sensory delight.
i quite like good coffee, have i ever mentioned that?
this week for me has been pretty full, and i knew i had lots to write about and share with you lovely bigmoose crew, so i decided to write some stuff down to prompt me so i didn’t forget anything.
the only problem with this is that i have actually had a really busy week, that could cause today’s blog to require an interval whilst reading if i’m not careful, so i am going to keep it somewhat brief, so you don’t nod off in work, and wake with dribble coming out of the side of your mouth, as that would give a whole new meaning to ‘that friday feeling’.
so, to start with, last friday i met a chap called michael burne, who owns a company called carbon law, and i met michael through a friend of mine victoria hall, who ran for emily with bigmoose in the cardiff half last year, and victoria has been amazing recently, helping link me up with some great people, and booking me for a paying speaking engagement, and generally encouraging me lots, so cheers vic, your support has been top notch. so, i meet michael for a coffee, and we get on, i mean proper get on, and the two hours we spend nattering just speeds by, with michael agreeing at the end of the conversation to help provide foc a lawyer to handle our legal work, when we get our coffee shop, so as meetings go, it was rather good, and i have a funny feeling we will be doing more great stuff together in the future, i liked michael.
unbeknownst to me this piece of legal work normally costs circa £2k, so friday finished the week off rather spiffingly, so thank you jonathan beck who is the lawyer chap that is going to kindly perform our legal duties, and michael for facilitating this, it is so strange how connections just happen, and some wonderful stuff can blossom when people hear the bigmoose story, there isn’t a day goes by when i’m not amazed by the power of this thing. that was friday.
saturday i got paid for my first gig i have ever compered, and i really enjoyed it, and i have to say i felt very grown up, and at one point wondered what my friends i grew up in finsbury park with would have thought as i introduced companies and individuals that are literally changing the world, with members of the british empire and winners of fund manager of the year award, among others, being on the roster.
as i watched the presentations these fellow humans gave, my time to wrap the show up came, and as i took off my suit jacket and rolled up my sleeves, i wondered if this was unplanned symbolism on my part.
i talked about losing my best friend ten years ago this march 1st, and all the things that bigmoose and you dear reader have done in the last two years that bigmoose has existed, and as i invited questions from the audience i saw one of the speakers i had introduced, ask for the microphone in his seat in the vast auditorium.
joão andrade is co-founder and ceo of widecells group plc, and as he spoke into the microphone, he told me and the audience how he too was an ultra runner, and how he wanted to run an ultramarathon this year, and raise money for bigmoose, and as the audience clapped, i realised that my mate georgina’s advice to speak to audiences was some of the best advice i have ever had, tell people about bigmoose and they will want to be part of this beautiful thing, and i realised this is my path.
joão is based in portugal, and on monday as my phone showed a number from portugal was calling i knew it was him.
he was calling me from the airport to confirm he was very serious about his commitment, and would be presenting it to his board for support.
what the heck!!!
ceo of a plc presenting to his board to raise money for bigmoose, based on me telling our story, seriously, please don’t ever underestimate how you bigmoose blog reader are helping make amazing shizzle happen, geez this journey is a goodun, and it can only get bigger and stronger with all of our energy combined, so thank you for playing your part, i hope you are enjoying the ride?
i arrived home friday night mentally frazzled, this speaking mullarkey is so adrenaline fuelled, and so full of emotion it actually leaves me exhausted, but in a good way.
i slept well.
sunday, me and our lass drove to london to the dusty knuckle bakery in dalston to learn how to make bread, sourdough, focaccia, and walnut and raisin half sourdough, and we absolutely loved it, and the process was therapeutic, tasty, and rewarding all in four loaves.
tuesday, we set off to peter alan estate agents to collect the last van load of warm clothing for the homeless that they have been collecting in their 29 branches, and collected our 1000th bag from them, over 1 0 0 0 bags of warm gear that the general public have donated, and we have distributed to people living on our streets, man i’m proud of some of the humans that we work with, pretty sweet huh, well done peter alan!!
wednesday, we headed off to meet one of our mates, who i’m not going to name, as he will get really embarrassed, but we have a running project that we will be launching very soon, which he will be headlining, but knowing about my everest predicament as we went to pick him up due to him being without a vehicle currently, he beckoned us in to collect a load of golf clubs, and other stuff for us to sell on e-bay to help fund my trip, which was really kind, and as we sat discussing the upcoming running gig, he passed over a pile of notes as well, which he said he wanted to support me with, which nearly saw tiny tears make an appearance, but you’ll be proud to know i was strong and just hugged him tight instead, and as he said to me ‘you have to go’ i did swallow rather hard as well, but i didn’t crack, wow, this a emotional journey!
so i got to thursday without having a boo, go me!
thursday, we have booked a day off from work to go to winsley primary school in bath, where one of the coolest head teachers i’ve ever met rebecca wilson, who is the lady i mentioned last year who initiated the ‘womble’, or ‘winsley one mile before lessons everyday’, which she started with our mate mathew pritchard when he started his 100k challenge, and has carried on with her school ever since, which i think is brilliant.
beccy has been liasing with us on the everest theme, and where i have been doing school assemblies over the last few months, she asked if we would spend a whole day at winsley, talking to every class, and also the teachers, and i was really excited as we rocked up full of energy.
‘we have a surprise for you’ she told us as she greeted us, and i really didn’t have a scooby what it could be as she led us to the main hall.
the hall was full of the children i was going to be meeting throughout the day, and i spied mountain imagery all around the place, and as she introduced me and chloe, the children proceeded to sing the song they had learnt to sing to us, have a click below to see and hear something to warm the cockles of yer heart.
i so nearly went, but held it together, but as they sang full of gusto, i had a kind of weird calm feeling, almost out of body, where i just felt this everest journey is going to happen, there just seems to be so many reasons why it has to, and so many people, including my brilliantly supportive guide russell brice helping me, so to everybody that has sent me messages up support and encouragement, and helped financially so far, thank you so much, we’re quite a way off what i need to get, but hopefully these next 34 days will see it come together.
every class in winsley primary was fantastic, and the children were so interested, thought provoking, and some of the questions and answers were literally jaw droppingly entertaining, they had put so much effort into decorating their classrooms with nepali flags, base camp reconstructions, and facts and figures relating to everest i loved it.
this whole school engagement idea has been brilliant for me, and the schools seem to be enjoying it as well, and hopefully from a chance encounter at saturday night’s shindig we will be heading up to leicester to spread the word as well, the story travels further 🙂
so that was the week so far, a pretty goodun i reckon, and as i go into the week where i remember my pal moosey boy, that we lost ten years ago i reflect on how losing him has touched so many people that didn’t even know him, and i kinda like that.
so his memory and legacy live on through a vision that didn’t even exist while he was alive, but if you are reading this you are a part of it, so on behalf of me, and all of the big mans family, thanks for anything and everything you have done in his memory.
thinking of ya moose, loved ya like a brother.
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