Old mates are the best, they always make me think of Springsteen’s ‘Glory Days’ you are always great in retrospect! Still there’s just about enough life in us to make some new stories.
I really couldn’t wait to pack my suitcase and head off to see my old schoolmate Grest. He lives in Presov, Slovakia which is a train, 2 flights and a taxi, 7 hours in all but well worth it because Grest and I have been mates for almost 40 years.
Of course the trip starts well before the journey; emailing back and forth, planning our itinerary, packing my bags. Just looking at my bag and my kit got the butterflies going, partly out of excitement for seeing my old pal and partly because we weren’t going on any coach trips or sightseeing in the city.
None of that normal 50 something stuff, Grest was having none of it; for the weekend he’d arranged for us to enter an open age athletics event on the Saturday and the Kosice half marathon on the Sunday! Why? …. Because that’s what we did at school, nevermind that it was the 1970’s then.
It was a great trip though, with a punishing schedule; a few late drinks Friday, collecting our numbers and T shirts Saturday morning, several laps of the track and two 200m races on Saturday afternoon, followed by a few more, cheap pints of strong beer that evening. Then the Big One on Sunday!!
A chilly start to the day, leaving Presov at 7am but the weather picked up and glorious sunshine ensued, probably not the best for distance running but great for seeing the city. All done by 10.45am we then watched the rest of the race before heading to the bar.
When Grest and I used to race, way back when, I had the edge because I was bigger and that counted for a lot at school, not so much when you’re 52. However if you think this is the bit where I make my excuses, you’d be wrong, some things never change and I came home on Tuesday morning with two 200m wins and the half marathon crown and I’m sure I had more to drink than he did as well ….
Old mates are the best especially slow ones ….. Roll on Prague April 18!!
Thanks to Nick for this month’s Travel Blog. He has received a brand new ‘Rock Carbon Lightweight Backpack’to use on his next adventure. If your planning an adventure in December and would like to tell us about your trip then get in touch with us today.