How I live with Parkinson's


Sir Ranulph Fiennes spoke openly with his cousin Joseph, the actor, about his Parkinson's diagnosis while filming his new TV travel series.

The 80-year-old explorer spoke about the condition while filming the series in Canada, where he and his cousin retraced the steps of his 1971 Headless Valley Expedition to the Northwest Territories.

Large parts of the region are only accessible by air, water or long walks and are still unexplored.

“Fiennes: Return to the Wild” airs Sunday, May 26 at 8 p.m. on National Geographic.

The Fiennes cousins ​​had previously teamed up in 2019 to relive Sir Ranulph's 1969 hovercraft expedition on the Nile.

Joseph Fiennes took part in a question-and-answer session at the series premiereJoseph Fiennes took part in a question-and-answer session at the series premiere

Joseph Fiennes took part in a question and answer session at the premiere of the series – PinPep/SWNS

In an interview ahead of the broadcast of the new series, Joseph, 53, told Sir Ranulph: “This particular expedition, a journey looking back on your visit to Canada 50 years ago, has brought to light something that I thought you were very brave to talk about – Parkinson's disease.

“And it’s not easy – it takes a lot of courage to talk about it.

“I think that maybe it will allow other people who are struggling with this disease to face the hard truths, and I think it was incredibly brave and important that you spoke up for this discussion.”

In the series, Sir Ranulph travels mainly by car, following in his footsteps. During the journey, the explorer speaks openly about his health, as well as male aging, frailty and love.

Speaking about the difficulties of his Parkinson's disease, which was diagnosed in 2019, Sir Ranulph says: “I think Parkinson's disease is very different for every patient.

Explorer wants to try cold swimming

“I have found that dizzy spells can come on suddenly, and when that happens you have to be careful until the dizziness wears off. Otherwise you will be flattened and the injury you get from falling will be worse than Parkinson's.

“The best hope of healing myself is swimming in cold water. And that's what I plan to do.”

“Unfortunately, you have to like going into cold water – I've spent my whole life trying to avoid the cold.”

When asked what's next for the cousins, Joseph joked that Elon Musk reached out to them and offered them the chance to fly into space.

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