Video: Ehemaliger Pilot, Der Für Soloflüge Berühmt Ist, Begibt Sich Auf Ein Episches Eselabenteuer
2023 Autor: George Kingsman | [email protected]. Zuletzt bearbeitet: 2023-05-21 05:32
Eine Serienabenteurerin, die als erste Frau alleine über die Polarregionen flog, stellt sich dieses Jahr einer neuen Herausforderung, als sie zwei Esel auf einer epischen Wanderung nach Wales fährt.
Polly Vacher MBE hat sich mit ihren Langstrecken-Soloflügen darauf spezialisiert, Spenden für wohltätige Zwecke zu sammeln Umrundung der Welt in einer einmotorigen Piper PA-28 Cherokee Dakota G-FRGN.
2007 unternahm sie ihre letzte große Reise und startete vom Flughafen Birmingham zur „wings around Britain challenge“, wo sie auf allen 221 Flugplätzen im Jeppesen VFR Manual landete.
Vor einem Jahr musste sich der 76-Jährige vom Fliegen zurückziehen, als eine Operation zur Verbesserung ihres Sehvermögens sei "furchtbar schiefgegangen", lässt sie auf ihrem rechten Auge blind.
Während sie sich im Krankenhaus erholte und sich „sehr leid für mich tut, da ich wusste, dass ich nicht mehr fliegen kann“, kam Polly die Idee, ihre Esel Wizard und Muffin auf die 200-Meilen-Reise mitzunehmen.
„Der Verlust meiner Sehkraft war ein echter Schock“, sagte Polly. „Ich bin normalerweise ein sehr positiver Mensch und ich habe mich sehr bemüht, positiv zu sein, aber es ging mir schlecht – ich konnte nicht lesen und bekam rund um die Uhr Augentropfen, also Alles was ich tun konnte, war dort zu sitzen und mich schrecklich zu fühlen.
“then i had a card from the guardian of a church in north wales, who i had met while staying with a friend, saying that she had heard i was in hospital and she hoped i would be able to cope with all that was in front of me.
“i had a lightbulb moment and i thought ‘i could drive my donkeys from oxford to the church at st melangell [in north wales]’ and the donkathon was born.”
polly had bought wizard and muffin as yearlings 11 years ago as an “extra interest” and went from having no previous involvement with equids to teaching them to drive.
“on my first world flight i was followed by a journalist commissioned by the sunday telegraph, she flew on scheduled airlines and it was quite a challenge for her to get to the places i was going on time. she was with me for four months and when she got back she found it a bit of an anti-climax, so she decided she would get a donkey and taught it to drive,” polly explained.
“i then decided i would go to the donkey sanctuary and take their training modules, which i did, and they told me to ‘go and get some donkeys.’”
wizard and muffin were not even halter-broken when they arrived and polly had a steep learning curve turning them into the driving pair they are today.
“the problem is, they didn’t read the manual but i managed to train them!” she said. “i had a wonderful amount of help from people, including many from the donkey breed society.”
special preparations for this trip have included getting the pair used to water as they have two fords to cross, as well as getting expert advice on trimming their feet.
“we have been driving them in a trailer to a ford and using carrots and ginger nuts to coax them in, as donkeys hate water,” polly said. “at first we did it not harnessed up but now they have they confidence they don’t think anything of it, and i am very proud of them.”
they have also had specially-made high-vis raincoats and rugs made to deal with anything the welsh weather might throw at them.
polly’s previous adventures have supported charities including flying scholarships for the disabled, for whom she raised £500, 000. this time, her trip will be raising funds for multiple sclerosis (ms) research, a cause close to home as her nephew was diagnosed with the disease aged 26.
“i originally trained as a physiotherapist 50 years ago and i knew about ms from then and i was amazed how little progress has been made in understanding it,” polly said. “there has been a big push by ms research to raise £100million and while there is no way i can raise that amount, 1, 000 miles starts with the first step.”
more information on polly’s trip, which is scheduled to begin on 17th july 2020, can be found on her website and facebook page.
would you like to read horse & hound’s independent journalism without any adverts? join horse & hound plus today and you can read all articles on horseandhound.co.uk completely ad-free