Thursday, July 05, 2007

FREE AT LAST



After more than 110 days in captivity, my colleague Alan Johnston is finally free.

Yesterday was one of the greatest days I've ever spent in the BBC newsroom. Even the most grizzled hack had a smile on his or her face.

Yesterday evening, we celebrated Alan's release at the Amnesty International Media Awards, where his parents Graham and Margaret received a standing ovation.

And after thinking long and hard about it, I've decided to use Alan's release as an opportunity to draw this blog to a close....for the moment at least.

The sad fact is that with the demands of my beautiful baby, work and assorted other projects, I just haven't had the time or energy I'd like to devote to this blog recently.

I don't like doing things by half measures, so I'd rather stop completely than continue half-heartedly.

Although I haven't decided yet, I'm tempted to continue podcasting and would be interested to hear about any projects which might be of interest to a cynical, one-legged hack.

It's been a fascinating, stimulating, if at times tragic four years.

Thanks to everyone who's followed the journey.

58 Comments:

Blogger Sarah Goodyear said...

Stuart,

I stumbled upon your blog way back in March 2003. I no longer remember how I found it. But over the years I have followed it regularly, marveling all the while at your resilience, your humor, your perspicacity and your spirit. I will miss you online, but I hope that somehow we will meet in the real world one day. Look me up if you're ever in New York, and keep podcasting.

All best to you and Aileen and the beaming boy,

Sarah

1:26 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

Hi Stuart
Sad to hear you're going to be finishing up your blog as I've enjoyed being updated on your work and family life (and all those cute pics of Billy Bob!) after our interview a while back for Able magazine.
Wishing you all the best for your future, and keep in touch if you have any major developments with your bionic foot!
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1:35 PM  
Anonymous Tracey said...

Stuart,

I've been following the blog since April 2003. We have a mutual friend who informed us of what happened at the hockey Play Off Final weekend that year. I've enjoyed your postings over the last four years - they've been a mixture of heartbreaking, entertaining, informative and uplifting.

As sad as I am to see the end of this blog, your reasoning is totally understandable. I wish you and your family all the best for the future, and I guess I'll see you at the Dome for the NHL with Roger :)

10:06 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

Stuart,

It's so sad that you're ending the blog! :(
I stumbled upon it 3 years ago and have been an avid reader ever since. As a 14 (now 17) year old wannabe-foreign affairs journalist, you inspired me to pursue my dreams and yourself and Frank Gardner are my two ultimate heroes. You have such courage and determination, you're a truly amazing man and your blogs have been sometimes fun, sometimes upsetting, sometimes very very cute with Billy Bob, but always inspiring.

All the best for the future for you and your beautiful wife and little boy! I'll miss you!

Jenny

8:34 PM  
Anonymous mrspjk said...

Hi Stuart

I came across your blog when I was trying to find any match results for the England Amputee Football squad whilst they were competing in the World Cup in Brazil. You have also mentioned the GB team when they were fundraising to get to Russia to play in the European Champs and were struggling for funding, something for which I was very greatful to you for highlighting. I will miss your blogs and news of Billy Bob but what fabulous news to go out on with the long-awaited release of Alan Johnston. I would like to wish you well and hope that you return with an equally inspiring and excellent blog in the future.

11:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

best wishes for the future. we'll miss you.
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4:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Stuart,

I too will miss your blog. As you know I stumbled (or should I say hopped) across it only a mere year ago while looking for info on fellow amputees on the internet.

I know you are probably bored hearing it but reading about your exploits have been a real inspiration to me over the past year or so, and I don't even know if I would ever have taken up the cycling and running (in a manner of speaking - I still have a very very long way to go before I can call what I attempt to do on the treadmill actually running), had I not come across your blog.

Anyway, best of luck for the future and for the family, and let me know if you are planning any trips to Asia - we might finally be able to go for that bike ride together!

Fiona

9:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good on yer Stuart,
I have been watching you write less and less since Billy Bob came along with respect. You have your priorities right!
What a great way to go out too with the wonderful news about Alan. I thought of you when I heard the news of his release and knew you would be a happy man
I have been inspired and at times even tearful at your sharings. I found your blog a few days after you lost your foot and have been an avid reader ever since.
When I was going through my own traumas with my daughter in the hospital you were there for me which I deeply appreciated. Maybe some day we can get our kids together at a play ground.
Good luck.
Dr. Robert in Michigan

6:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been reading this blog almost from the start, it will be very hard to say good bye, but enjoy your wife, life and child and I wish you luck.

2:25 PM  
Anonymous Deirdre said...

Hi Stuart
Just wanted to echo the comments by anonymous - it will be very hard to say goodbye. But Dr Robert is right, you have your priorities right. I've followed your blog from early on although, like others, I cannot remember how I found it.
Hawddamor!

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Anonymous peppe said...

in Italy we use two different words to translate the word 'goodbye':
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I hope this is an 'arrivederci'; anyway I am happy for you, I wish you all the best :)

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