Team Tab Jailbreak – Live!
Follow Lottie Unwin’s Jailbreak progress LIVE, all weekend.
This weekend, our resident Drama Queen Lottie Unwin will be flying the flag for Team Tab on this year's RAG Jailbreak. Along with her companion Jo Hall, she will be trying to get as far away from Cambridge as possible in 36 hours but without money to aid her.
Her charm, her beauty and offers of bribery that may border on the unacceptable will be her only weapons. Will she reach her dream of China? Will she beat Team Varsity? Or will she end up stuck in a campervan with only Leatherface’s brother for company, who's stabbing himself and ranting about head-cheese?
Follow her progress here, LIVE, all weekend as she reports back on her progress. And follow our news writer Faraz Dianat's progress on a live map at the bottom of the page.
03.38 (UK time):
We finished the packet of dates sitting in Sharm airport waiting for news and hoping that there would be free seats on one of the flights back to England. Manchester, Doncaster, we really weren't bothered. Ibrahim, one of our new friends, did his best to help us and Jo had a poem written for her by another Thompson rep but it really did feel that getting to those in charge was impossible.
Eventually I found out there was a Stansted flight (such news had been hidden from us and all the departure boards entirely) and we sorted out some tickets. Within 10 minutes we were on the plane and in another 5 I had sorted us a lift back to Cambridge with the couple next to us, persuading two O.A.P's that Cambridge is definitely on the way back to Yarmouth and that any slight was in fact just what they were looking for at 3 in the morning.
We arrived the other side to find two Jailbreakers', Giles and Thea, looking exhausted in orange t-shirts with hitchhiking signs. They piled in the car with us and half an hour later, with tears of joy in our eyes we were back at Homerton.
To last 48 hours have given me so much faith in humanity. 99% of the time, people will do all they can to help a big smile and a good cause. After the whirlwind of Egyptian markets college is deserted, after crack den rooms I am now living in 5 star luxury and after the quite possibly the most exciting 2 days of my life, university life might have lost it's lustre a little.
Editor in chief, you should be proud of me and Team Jailbreak.
17.54 (Egyptian time):
Mohammed took us around, to the mosque teaching us how Muslims pray and then to the beach to see how the Brits drink and have easy sex with Russians. It was difficult to stand up for our race as they lay sweaty and sunburnt, fat spilling over the side of their deck chairs. We had lunch in a market, chatting to an English man called Mark who paid for our shisha and explained his plans of opening a bar here.
Now we are in the airport, trying to get home. Thompson stand by tickets are now suddenly 50 pounds more than they were and everything has gone crazy with the flights to Manchester cancelled because of snow. There are lots of angry, tanned northeners looking perplexed by our orange t shirts.
I have managed to get onto the internet at the information desk and now they are asking me questions. To anyone stuck in Sharm-El-Sheik, it's really not my fault and I really do know how you feel. I am about to have to max out my overdraft to get back. We are celebrities amongst Thompson staff and airport officials here, with our bag of dates (that they find hilarious) and Jo's RAF hat.
11.42 (Egyptian time):
Went to sleep in front of Egyptian music videos on our damp matresses, Jo lucky to have the excuse that it was from her wet hair, mine just worrying. I found a pube on the sheets very near my face but sleep deprivation left me apathetic to it.
We slept 2 hours past our alarm, so I am relieved to confirm that my inability to attend lectures is medical. Not even the notion of a camel ride can get me out of bed. We have called Mohamed and he is coming by to pick us up.
Egyptians are the most friendly people, alarmingly so. I found this email today in my facebook inbox:
I am sorry . But you Forget your mail Is open
I close it lottie and take your mail so tell U . So I hope see you again to say Nice to meet you and you have A beautiful smile and romantic , Probably talking with each other or be friendship between us and I hope so Very Much .
Eng : Ahmed Gaber
And he didn't even write anything rude. Legend.
Yes folks, she's arrived safe and sound and she's currently tucking into some Egyptian delicacies. Photos to follow when she returns.
9.05pm (Egyptian time):
My phone has died so I am going straight to press from an internet cafe surrounded by chain-smoking men. We got off the plane in thermals and boots to a boiling hot evening, with the mountains behind and desert around. Flying over the identical hotels of tourist destination Sharm El Sheikh, I wasn't sure what to expect when we made it the other side, but somehow we were on a Thompson bus transfer to the city, having begged the support of the guide. "Where are you staying?" he had asked. "We have no idea," we replied. "What? You booked a holiday without any accomodation?"… "Yes, um, sort of". (Too knackered to explain.)
He promised to take us somewhere cheap and without anyone else to trust we found ourselves completely in his hands, on a coach, then a local bus and then being walked to an appartment. The door is rotting ,the sheets are filthy but we are happy. Muhammed, my new best friend, just took us to a local market for dinner hidden behind the 'Las Vegas goes African' exterior of the town. Poor vegetarian Jo grimaced as I had a photo shoot with the butcher and his buffalo's tail, Tab t-shirt on full show. We tucked into tahini, salad, rice and chicken having to finish every mouthful in keeping with Egyptian tradition, washed down with sugar cane juice which looks and tastes and has all the sticky consistency of honey.
Cambridge feels so far away. We are Egyptian celebrities, now known as the 'charity girls' who don't need sleep, money or plans to get home. That will be a whole other challenge…
So Miss Unwin is officially through the mire of airport security – admittedly a few cosmetics lighter – and she's on her way to Sharm El Sheikh…
I'll be in contact from Egypt!
They took away my foundation and toner at airport security. Absolute bastards. Tired, mightily pissed off, but on plus side, finally leaving the UK. I've always wanted to see a pyramid…
Is there an entrance tax to Egypt? Oh god, hope not.
Very tired. So very tired. Flight to Egypt in an hour, hopefully, although it's all a bit up in the air. Like we want to be. Not sure how we're going to get back but pretty excited…seen loads of Jailbreakers head off to exciting places.
In Heathrow, having heard that the place to beat is now Tenerife we're feeling pretty competitive. Alarm's set for 3.30am to get up and start sorting flights. No rest for the wicked.
Somehow just persuaded the coach driver to take us to Gatwick for nothing. Trying to get a bit of sleep before we get to the airport for a night of haggling. Minstrels (the chocolate – not the medieval bards) are a great invention.
After running onto a bus, frantically calling friends while the man behind us said, "Cambodia!" over and over again (? – you meet some strange characters in this London place), we are back at Victoria Coach Station. Half an hour till the next bus to Gatwick (airport of choice for no particular reason) and too shattered for any more begging. Still in relatively high spirits though.
After checking in with The Tab and being informed that as of this point, the Jailbreak team who are furthest away are in Copenhagen, Lottie responds with, "Copenhagen is child's play." Team Varsity, watch out. The Tab is so on it.
Caffeine injection. Wandered into Soho to try a bit more fundraising. Found ourselves having a bizarre conversation with Christian Union who had positioned themselves outside a sex shop, dispensing hot beverages. (Another caffeine injection.) Quite strange discussing God and the Holy Trinity while a neon sign flashing "LUBE" illuminates the faces of the preachers. Made around £200. About to get on a bus to Victoria – Athens is the plan…
Hats and pubs seem to be a winning combination. Two hours of pub-crawling in central London being smiley has made us enough money for a flight to Europe – so much for Calais, we're aiming higher. Going to keep going to raise some money for RAG and head to the airport about 11pm.
Victoria Coach Station was a meeting point on Jailbreakers. So far there is news of one couple making it out of the UK, and everyone had got to London after lots of fundraising. Having not asked for a penny yet so far we are proud of ourselves. Going to take our hats around pubs to raise enough for a bus further south. It's going to be a long night.
She said no, complaints about not having a registered charity number. STA Travel could not help. Now at the coach station. It's getting cold, but still somewhat fun. Damn the fact that I actually live in London – makes my own bed so tempting…
Can Cambridge please cross their fingers that the woman in the Southern Rail office can help. Cross them tightly. We're heading south.
On a bus across London after turning down a train driver's offer of a lift with him in 'the van'. Lots of debate over hitching versus free trains to Dover and the bus came first, saving me having to drive past my own house. Blue skies have made us cheerier.
Interested in a self-driven tour to the White Cliffs of Dover? Even Paris? Please email [email protected], or come to Liverpool Street station and look for the girls sheltering, defeated, under a pile of Jaffa Cakes boxes.
It's snowing. No one would give us a ferry ticket. I wish I had slept more and had some coffee to hand. Back on a train to London with no idea what to do then. We are suitably suffering for the sponsorship.
Just pulled into Chelmsford. The sign says, 'The Home of Anglia Ruskin'. Big hopes for Harwich. Please, oh please.
Stansted has quickly filled up with orange t-shirts. Blagged a free train ticket to Liverpool Street and are trying to work out what to do when we get there. Already eaten the supply of Jaffa Cakes.
At Stansted struggling with an unresponsive Easyjet desk and Polish call centre. Apparently no one wants to give us free flights.
Finally picked up a lift from a lovely Hills Road sixth former called Jason. Trying to get to the Park and Ride. Lots of people shook their heads at us in despair. Already been chucked off a coach. Apparently this is harder than in it looks.
Lottie joins the throng of competing jailbreakers upon Parker's Piece, waiting for the starting signal…
If you haven’t sponsored Lottie, but still wish to do so, please do here.
Faraz Dianat, The Tab's fearless newshound, is also representing us against TCS and Varsity. Follow his progress on the map below…
To sponsor him, click here.
Follow the Cambridge Rag leader-board at this website.
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