Friday, April 13, 2018

Catching up

I didn't mean to leave this big a gap in the blog, but life has been slightly hectic these last few weeks.

I got over my illness quicker than I thought I would and within a few days we were off to Norway. Having been the more reluctant of the two of us to try cruising, it turned out that I enjoyed it more than Lesley did. This was because she went down with a viral cough about six days in to the holiday and didn't recover until we had been home for nearly a fortnight. Add to that the effect of motion sickness as we were rounding the very top of Norway, and she had a pretty miserable time of it.

However, she only missed a couple of meals and one excursion, so there was plenty to enjoy. The biggest highlight was the dog-sledding, which we did twice. I actually wrote a poem about this which you might like:

Dog Sledding

Who knew
that huskies can run and shit
Part of the adventure,
for us –
beside the serenity of snow,
the calm whiteness of the fjord,
the black scrawl of birches –
is to avoid the flying turds
as they come shooting
from the scampering anuses.

Oh - and we saw the northern lights, which was the main point of the exercise.

Flying back into Gatwick through a snowstorm was exciting and then we had to decide whether to drive home that night, or find a hotel. Glad we did drive home because the following morning everything was covered in snow. Not the beautiful crunchy snow you get in Norway - just ordinary British snow that stopped people driving up our hill for an hour or two and then turned to slush.

Then the Commonwealth Games. 

I've just watched Leon Reid being interviewed after his medal ceremony. Perfect to see one of the nicest Bristol athletes getting a reward. It was always a pleasure starting races that he ran in when he was a boy. Happy to chat and help other athletes, he always had the most positive outlook of any athlete around.  After moving on he would sometimes turn up at an open meeting and still be happy to chat with officials and generally be a great bloke.

Of course, he was lucky to finish up where he did, but that is not to take away from the effort he put in, never giving up and pushing for the line even when winning was not on the cards. I'm sure Zharnel Hughes is a great bloke too, but for me, Leon deserved every moment of his success.

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As a student I worked in a hotel in Devon. We waiters worked in pairs, sharing a work station, and my partner was an Italian called Giorgio....