Tuesday, 15 December 2009

return to NZ

another day traveling, another time zone and a surprising amount of jet lag for what i'd only considered to be a short hop from one land down under to another. Now here i am back in christchurch, after nearly a week now thoroughly re-settled. Everything is very familiar of course - its remarkable how much detail you remember even when you don't remember remembering it. It was very easy to slip straight back into training, albeit quite light this week in consideration of Steven's recovery and our jet lag. It was quite a surprise that within our first day here i had bumped into 3 people that i knew and the following day so many people at the swim squad remembered us from last summer, and how many faces i recognized too.

We are renting a room from a couple who we got to know a little at the end of our stay last year, Andrew and Ali - both triathletes, and she is an adventure racer too, with their first home renting out two rooms to other triathletes. The other housemate is Rob, a sports scientist and triathlete who knows John Newsom and the epic camp guys and seems to be very well connected in the endurance sports scene. oh and two dogs. Its nice to be in a house share again - the option of easy company but not being a 'guest' as such, no feeling of obligation to socialize when the training and triathlon talk gets a bit much! . And steven has got an audience who appreciates him (i dont think he ever get bored of talking tri!).

Some of the funny things that come back to me now about this place - how friendly everyone is to start with, well thats not so funny - just nice. even the school kids are polite, and no one minds if you bring your bike into a shop, cars will stop to let you cross the road and cyclists, runners and other pedestrians will always say 'hello' when they pass. There are a lot of tattoos around. A lot of pies (coke and hot pie for $2 at most Diaries) and it's certainly the land of sweets too of yes, it's Cookie time again! And the strange chocolate fish (pronounced 'fush') that are sold unwrapped at each shop counter for a dollar. and the weather talk. Wow they say that the brits are obsessed with it but these guys know the winds like experts. Mind you in a land where the sun is radioactive, the winds inspired Dyson and hailstones come in grades of size and sharpness and can fall in a torrential manner at any given moment that the 'sou'wester' dictates depending on the direction that the wind blows, you're best knowing what's likely in store. The picture shows me drenched through having been caught in a torrential rain and hail storm at the end of a run. I'd been out on a mild but sunny day for a couple of hours, and was 15 minutes form home when the air went very cold all of a sudden and the next thing it was raining heavily. then it was raining very heavily...then it was very very heavy and included hailstones. By the time i was in our street, the roads and pavements were flowing a foot deep and i was running through freezing puddles almost up to my knees.
I'm a bit concerned about the fact that my parcel of warmer clothing that i posted before leaving the UK, has not yet arrived. Cameron has very kindly donated a Bikeworkz cycle jacket in yellow with red polka dot, for which i am very grateful...but please Mr Postman, please bring my box of kit to me!!

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