17th December 2015
I don’t think it has quite sunk in that we have relocated to Brisbane, and this is my life now. We’re living in a cute little holiday home awaiting the arrival of our belongings, so it really feels like we’re just visiting. We have no routine, no responsibilities, no deadlines; each day we wake up and wonder what we can find to do to fill our day. Herbert appears to have taken root on the sofa with the TV remote moulded to his hand. The girls float between their bedroom and the back garden with their noses pasted in a book or their phones. When I have prised them from their perches, we’ve been out and drunk coffee (or iced chocolates or coke) in cafés in Bulimba and Manly. Today we might get out and buy bus tickets so we can ride into the CBD.
It probably feels less holiday-ish for the Grumpster, as he has to get up each morning and drive to work.
Which has led to the creation of a great game that I get to play every day.
The game goes like this: I say how much I’m enjoying my new lifestyle. Grumpster responds “until you get a new job”. I give him a confused look and say “but I don’t have a job?” and then watch the look of horror/panic wash across his face. We play this game every day and my glee is undiminished, just as the horror/panic expression is undimmed!
I am enjoying being at home. Most of the time.
I make an exception for the times when the noses emerge from books/phones and realise there is an annoying little brother who needs to be admonished for breathing/existing in the wrong way.
And I got round to thinking about what I’d do with my time, if my life were a perpetual holiday. And money grew on trees. And Qantas flew jogging-bloggers round the world to various destinations.
Kate, from OpMove, mentioned that she wants to run in the Honolulu marathon, which was followed up with pictures on the Running GIRL FB page of Nicole and a friend actually there. Coming from the UK, Hawaii was simply a surf destination in a reasonably inaccessible part of the world with pretty tropical trees. And more to the point, coming from the UK, surfing is simply a sport for masochists with a penchant for rubber. Nutters!!
So I made me a little wish list of a marathon a month (well, there are 12 but some of them double-up in the same month):
The Disney Marathon, and in particular the Dopey Challenge. There’s just something appealing about running 4 distances alongside a bunch of dressed up people. I find costumed runners motivating. I ran my fastest 5km a few years ago because I couldn’t face the ignominy of being beaten by a human-sized chicken. And the guy running in a rhino head at Comrades meant I could find my way back to my “bus” when I dropped off the pace for the second most mentioned wee in running history (after Paula Radcliffe’s London Marathon display, of course).
Boston Marathon. Because when you’ve spent 12 hours running over an 87.7km course and yet there’s only one single, solitary photo of me (walking) from Comrades, I’m a bit over being lost in the crowd. So the thing with Boston is that being a #backofthepacksuperstar would make me stand out amongst all the talented runners. Now just to doctor my birth certificate so I can qualify as good for age: aged 104…
Comrades. Don’t ask me why, but it is the Ultimate Human Race.
And afterwards, you’re in the most amazing part of the world for holiday experiences. Ballito is a gorgeous coastal resort, but the big draw for me will always be the animals. We stayed at the Lions Valley Lodge on the Nambiti Private Game Reserve and had the most amazing holiday. The whole experience from food, accommodation, game drives through service was superlative from start to finish. You’re so cosseted and so safe, it was the perfect way to rest and relax after a big run.
Stockholm and Tromsø. Seeing as they’re both in Scandinavia, and seeing as I’d like to keep them both on my bucket list, it seemed sensible to choose them both. I’d love to run the Stockholm marathon, just because it’s in such a beautiful city. The Tromsø marathon is the Midnight Sun Marathon. I’d like to experience running in broad daylight, but knowing it’s the middle of the night. My other Scandinavian bucket list item is seeing the Northern Lights, but that’s for another time and another season. If I could learn to cross-country ski, then I’d team it with a winter snow marathon!
Brisbane. How can you not run your home marathon? (At least in theory – running a marathon this close after Comrades is very unlikely in reality. For me, anyway.) But 2016 will be the race’s 25th birthday, so I shall definitely attend in some form or other. There’s also the Outback Marathon at Ayers Rock which appeals for the iconic status of the destination.
Marathon du Médoc. Run from vineyard to vineyard, with tasters along the way. Not your average mid-race fuel, but when have I ever been able to say no to the offer of a glass?
Berlin. Only because I’d love to see the East of the city. When I was a student back in the day, the Berlin Wall divided it and you needed to exchange about $20 to be able to get into the east. I didn’t have enough, so I could only get as far as the Brandenburg Tur and look at it’s arse. My claim to fame is that I was still living in Germany when they pulled the Wall down, and I watched on my little German TV set in my little German apartment as people scrambled up and pulled down bricks and joined their country back together.
Melbourne. I have a date with a gorgeous girl, who I used to see most days, but now we’re 2000 kms apart. Life’s a lot more fun when she’s around – there always seem to be shenanigans involved, so I’m already counting down the days already.
Queenstown. New Zealand has to be visited, and this place looks fab, so I’m putting it on my list just because.
So, maybe I could be persuaded, having seen Nicole’s pictures on FB. Hawaii, you’ve made the cut. But keep me away from the rubber fetishists, OK!
What races are on your bucket list?
Could you run a marathon a month? (I’m pretty sure I couldn’t.)
And what sort of holiday do you like? Chill out or active?