This has been a shockingly long time in coming hasn't it? It's fairly incredible but I have actually managed to break my umbilical attachment to my laptop - mostly - for a month. To some extent by necessity - I could rarely get onto a free network - and to some extent by choice - by the end of last month I was feeling swamped by everything on my plate and being online a lot was not helping..
So - I am back from my holiday and back into the swing of things. Quick lists of noteworthy things that happened in the past 4 weeks:
- had a GRRRREEAAAT holiday. We exchanged homes with a family from Vancouver, Canada and it worked out brilliantly. Better for us than for them - in fairness - as it never stopped raining in England - but still the concept is fantastic. We didn't have to pay for accommodation or car rental and so managed to have an amazing holiday and spend our money on the fun stuff. Vancouver is wonderful. I have always loved it there but I really spent the first week of our trip out there running round the neighbourhood at night desperate to just buy one, any of the houses I ran past. But my husband is a farmer and that is just not the kind of business you pick up and take with you and my kids are also so settled and happy in England - I came to realise after an initial infatuation that life, at least for the moment, is better in Lincolnshire. Having said that we all had a great time sightseeing, going to the beach and just hanging out. We even made a road trip to Victoria, Port Townsend and Seattle, where we hooked up with some old friends - it was a wonderful experience and so far away from all our daily domestic obligations and niggles. Very necessary for all.
- unfortunately, upon my return I was faced with an example of the kind of overambitious planning only I am capable of - I had booked for the children and I to go to Holland to visit my parents on a 7am flight last Thursday (we came back from Vancouver on Saturday). We made it, and have done it but are all a tad exhausted given that we hadn’t really dealt with the time change with Vancouver – 8 hours – before having to get up at 4:30 am and travel to Holland. But anyway – we’re here now and it’s lovely even if there’s probably things I should be attending to at home..
- running. My running. Well.. before I left I had definitely lost a bit of my mojo. My 14 mile run on the last Sunday before our trip was a struggle and quite unenjoyable, apart from the natter with my running buddy. Thankfully, I had started my running program 2 weeks early so this let me spread one week’s training over my 3 week holiday which was a wonderful break. I just went running when I felt like it and loved it for the sake of it. I had forgotten my footpod so I never saw how far I ran or how fast and I loved the freedom from a schedule or a given pace. Running in Vancouver was as wonderful as I had hoped – we were minutes from Pacific Spirit Park and I just loved running under the trees, snacking on huckleberries and stopping off for a delicious latte on the way home. Urban life is very attractive when you live as remotely as I do!
So – here I am – back on track and schedule in Holland. It was hard running at home in England last week because I was still so tired from the flight but I managed the week’s short runs and had to cram all the long runs in once I got here. So I ran 8 on Friday, 8 on Saturday and 16 yesterday. And – my friends – I have my mojo back! I’m not going to set any records and I stopped a few times but I managed the 16 miler in an average 11:20 pace and really enjoyed it. I’m also enjoying my new gadget, an iPod nano with a Nike+ gizmo. I was desperate to challenge Maddy and Robert Nelson last week but it took me a few days to get it calibrated and working properly. However, I'm ready now so about to extend an invitation!
So on I go. A fairly hefty week of running ahead I think but very enjoyable. My parents live in a stunning part of Holland with lots of woods and hills and miles of trails throughout. I'm going to try and take some photos this week.
So - till further notice - keep running and keep enjoying it!