Saturday, January 31, 2009

Due to the cold and somewhat icy conditions today the fee for the 2 mile race was waived. The turn out was quite small ( I think about 10). There was a strong headwind again just like last week. It felt like I was pushing for the whole race, but at times it also seemed like I was in slow motion. The runner just ahead of me looked like he was jogging, but I couldn't seem to get any closer. My finishing time was either 15:59 or 16:00. There was a problem with the clock and times were given from my watch, which I had given to the race director at the start.
Despite all these things I was faster than last week and have slowly improved with each race, so far this year. I think my times were better last year, but the weather was much warmer. Anyway I am happy to go out and try to run fast short races.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Early this morning, after my run I was checking out my Facebook pages. I got an instant message from a running friend of mine in India, we chatted for a little while and then he was gone. Later I talked with another running friend in Ohio. In this new world of technology I can have conversations during the day while sitting at my computer. We can send each other links to web pages and show each other photographs and in some cases see each other live on our computer screens while talking. Yes it's true that some of these things we can do by telephone.
This afternoon I went online and signed up for a 50k race that I will be running in March.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Now that I am back to my old schedule, which I have not been on for about 2 years. Tomorrow is the start of my weekend. After all that snow then rain yesterday it got cold during the night and yes there was major ice this morning. It did get much nicer during the day and my walk home and subsequent run later, was very pleasant. It seems, that for the next few days at least it will be cold nights and milder days.
Oh by the way! I used to play on a football ( soccer) team in my youth , that played in the United Nations league. That's me front row right.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

When I left the house for work this morning there was a nice blanket of snow on the ground, snow was blowing everywhere and it was a few degrees below freezing. Later in the day it got warmer and the snow turned to rain. So when I started back home thee was a slushy mess on the streets. While I was out running I would splash through icy cold puddles which would make my feet freeze. This sometimes what it can be like in New York in winter.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Because we have the odd worker out sick, I switched from my usual job and went to where I was needed today. The result was that the day went by really quickly.
There is very little snow on the ground at the moment, but the forecast is that there will be snow tonight and there could be some serious accumulations. So we will have to see what tomorrow brings.

Monday, January 26, 2009

So out it was this morning for my run and it felt surprisingly cold, ok it was 21 F, but it felt colder. At the end of my run I went into my local Bodega and was greeted with smile's and handshakes. When I walked out with my Ginger tea I had a real sense of optimism. It is the first full week with the new President, we sometimes say the start of a new watch.
During the morning I finished preparing my old laptop for my friend. The ant-virus free trail that came with my new laptop expired a couple of days ago, so I installed the one I have been using for a few years now.
Just before I was about to leave the house and get some Lunch, my wrist watch died, so I stopped by a local store and got a new one. So you could say I got a new watch on the new watch.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Still a bit congested and have a little bit of a bronchial cough. But that was not going to stop me going out in 16 degree F weather for my Sunday run. My Sunday running partner Utpal is off in sunnier climes for a few weeks. So it was up to me to get out there and run alone. It actually felt a little colder than I though when I got out there. You know once you get going you soon warm up. I managed to run for an hour and maybe because of my physical condition, felt a little sore at the end, but I was happy went out there and ran.

Later today there will be services for my friend who died earlier in the week, with his cremation taking place tomorrow.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

This mornings 2 mile race was kinda strange for me. It was not too cold, but there was a strong wind. It is a loop course, but it seemed as though I was running into a headwind for more than half of the race. It was only during and after the race that I realized I was a little sick. I have found in the past. that if there is something there, the 2 mile race will bring it out. Now I have to spend the weekend getting rid of it.
Speaking of the weekend, it is the FA Cup fourth round and my beloved Wolves are home to Middlesborough.
Last night I watched the second half of The curious case of Benjamin Button. I had seen the first half while in Slovenia 2 weeks ago. I also a saw The Wrestler

Friday, January 23, 2009

First of all the day started off nicely. It is like a warm winters day, not quite Spring but warmer than it has been. I got in a nice run early. I got a call from a friend in the UK that the son and daughter of another friend fro the UK would be coming out to Queens today, so I agreed to meet with them. The son just moved to New York after living in SF for 13 years. They were nice people and were interested to see some of the places their mother visits when she comes to NY. So I got to talk with them and be their tour guide for a couple of hours this afternoon. They had fun and so did I.Their names are Anthony and Jenny.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

It got above freezing today and the bright sunshine felt quite warm as I walked home from work this afternoon.
There is a Mosque in my neighborhood and some time, as today, while out on my run in the afternoon I here the call to prayer. It can be quite mystical.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Friends, even those you don't really know, but have a common interest with, can pick you up some times. Just chatting with, or talking on the phone, or even just receiving and e mail, can brighten your day. So please take a moment to make some kind of contact with a close or distant friend.
It was a cold but optimistic day for me, I have connected with some new running friends. There is a new President in the country, who already seems to making people feel better about things. So in this first month of the new year things are looking brighter.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Yes ladies and gentlemen it is now President Barack Obama, there seems to be a lot of joy around at the thought of what is to come.
However the day began with some sadness, when I heard that an old friend and colleague had finally lost his fight with Cancer. I was fortunate to see him 2 days ago and felt at that time, he was saying goodbye. He will be missed.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Today we celebrate the Birthday of Martin Luther King Jr, although his actual birthday would have been last week. It is very appropriate that tomorrow Barack Obama becomes the first Black American president. He is essentially fulfilling the dream that Reverend King talked about.
It snowed again overnight and there was a coating of snow on the ground as I went out for my run this morning. Later there was sunshine, but as I write this post there are big fluffy snow flakes coming down outside I think I have a bit of a head cold and spent a couple of hours napping this afternoon. I have turned to my old standard of eating 1 pound of grapes and we will see how it is tomorrow

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Much milder than yesterday, but still cold, 25 F ( -4 C ). There is snow falling, but right on 7am I met Utpal on the corner and off we went for our Sunday run. Of course it was a chance for us to catch up on a few things, but mainly it was jst nice to be out there running in Queens on a Sunday morning. Stopping in at our local cafe
( Panorama ) for a hot tea and scone at the end of our run.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Woke up with a bit of a stuffy nose and it was 8 F out there, that's -13 C. The usual 2 mile race took place and of course I was out there, wrapped up pretty good, so it didn't feel that cold. I do not run that fast when it's that cold. I am just happy to run the race, but it does set my starting standard for the year. My time was 16:20, which I am quite happy with. Many of the top runners are out of town, so I managed to place 6th amongst the men, 8th overall.
It will be strange to watch English football from afar this weekend.

Friday, January 16, 2009

OK so I know it's only 3 days at work, but today is a day o for me. I went out for a run this morning and the temperature was 12 or 13 F ( -11C ), it didn't feel so cold when I was running.
I spent the day catching up on a few things, chatting with some friends about what's been going on with them and telling them what's new with me.
I finally got to see the movie Slumdog Millionaire. I thought it was a good film.
This photo is of the dawn I woke up to in Slovenia about 12 days ago, to me it was very inspiring.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I just heard that an airplane went down into the Hudson river this afternoon, seems a flock of birds stopped both engines. No one died but it must have been really cold in the water. The temperature this afternoon was 20 F ( -7C ).
I have mentioned before my work colleague who has been battling cancer, well while I was away, it seems his condition has forced him to retire and sadly he is quite sick.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I was listening to a John Mayall album at work today and a line in one song struck me, " Life is a slow train climbing up a hill". This may be true when we are young, but as we get older things really do go fast.
I backed into a stand this morning and bruised my right calf, it was really sore for a little while, but seemed to get better through the day.
It's quite cold here and there is snow predicted tonight and tomorrow.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My first day back at work and a few things went wrong today. Well actually some things broke down. I think they wait till I get back and then decide it is time. This happens a lot when I come back from a break.
A week or so before I went away I was having trouble with my desk top computer. The cursor kept freezing and I thought maybe it was a bug. Then just before I left I discovered it was my track ball. Anyway I bought an Optical mouse on Penkridge Market Saturday and that is working really well.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Got an early start this morning. It was pissing down with rain as we drove to Manchester airport.Flight to London was uneventful, the wait for the flight to New York did not take long. I watched 3 movies on the plane, 1 of them being Julia. The next couple of days are going to be catch up days, my run on the streets of Jamaica, Queens felt good.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

This is my last day on this trip, I fly back to New York early tomorrow. So this morning I took my last Sunday run up the A449.It got really cold last night, but the weather was kind to me this morning, a little windy but not too cold. I ran out to Acton Trussel, actually running for 67 minutes. I did feel my legs a little bit, maybe the result of the 2 mountain runs and the traveling. I do feel that this has helped me get stronger and will pay off in the Spring.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

This is my last weekend in the UK, my last chance to watch some football. I did sit with my nephew and brother in-law and watch the Aston Villa v West Brom game. Villa won 2-1, they were not happy. My niece came over to say goodbye and I did a little shopping, buying a new optical mouse for my computer.
After a good nights sleep I feel a whole lot better today after my long trip back from Slovenia.

Friday, January 09, 2009

My flight was delayed by 1 hour last night.. When we landed at Stanstead it was really foggy. Anyway by the time I got back in to London and to Euston Station, I had missed the last train back to Stafford. I had to stay in London till 5:30 when the next train was due to leave. Then it seems that they close the station for 3 hours during the night. I had lived in London during the 70's, so I know my way around as it were. Not having anywhere to stay for 3 hours I bought a bus pass for 4 pounds and rode the night bus around London for that time..
I finally arrived back at my sister's house at 8am this morning. I had some breakfast and spent a litte time filling everyone in on the past week. Then it was time for a nap, since I had only caught about 2 hours of sleep in the last 24 or so.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Last night it snowed here and was still snowing when my friend Milan and I went out to run this morning. However as I write this post it is much brighter. This evening I fly back to the UK, I have had a good week here. It is just about 4 months before I move here in the Spring, already there so many things planned, one of which will be officially registering my ownership of the farm.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

This morning I went to a place called Terme Cetez, it is near the border with Croatia. My cousin came there last night with his family for a vacation. He had with him the pre contract for my Grandfather's farm. I signed the contract and money and key exchanged hands. I now own land in Croatia, the full contract will be signed in the Spring.
Yesterday in the afternoon I went with Marjan to a different part of Pohorje and ran on x country ski trails, for 2 hours. My legs were quite tired when I ran just a couple of miles this afternoon. I am really happy with the few days of winter traing that I have been able to put in.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Today it is trying to snow in Maribor, but having much luck. There will be World Cup Skiing here this weekend. In a few hours I will go back to Ljubljana. My host Marjan has said he will drive me since it is only 1 hour and it takes 20 minutes to drive to Maribor to get the train. It is very nice of him, it will be a much nicer ride.It is hard to believe that I have been here 5 days and will return to the UK in 2 more. Also this time next week I will be probably walking to work in New York.

Monday, January 05, 2009

I had a very busy day, I am happy with everything I did, but did not get to run. This is the first time in 8 1/2 months that I have not run. It has nothing to do with running the mountain yesterday, So I guess that I will have to start another streak tomorrow.The nights are getting very cold here -10 C last night and didn't get much above -4 C during the day.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

This morning I ran in a race up a mountain called Pohorje. We started on a snow covered road and then went on to trails and ski slopes. Most of the runners use ski poles or walking poles, it is very difficult, especially without poles. The race is only 3.8 km, but rise 700 meters in elevation.. The last part is like going up a very steep flight of stairs about 200 meters long. It really works the legs and lungs. At the top you get a health food bar and hot herbal tea. Then you go back down to the start and easier way. It took me about 55 minutes and then another 40 to get back down. Later we had a Pizza party and a slide show of the seasons races. It was really nice.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Yesterday I had a bit of a pressure headache and jet lag.Some of my friends were moving to a new place and I helped. Did manage to get a short run in late in the day.Of course I am sleeping really well. I am traveling North up to Maribor today. I need to talk with my cousin in Croatia to arrange where we are going to meet in a few days time.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Well I got here. I managed to get a high speed train from Stafford to London, then a short Underground ride to Liverpool St got me to the Stanstead Express.The flight was uneventful, when I arrived the was a little snow on the ground and the temperature was -5C. My friend Gasper picked me up and I must say I was very hungry. I had dinner watched an Italian movie and was out like a light. My internet connection is somewhat iffy, but I will do the best I can.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

So it's early and I just managed to get a 2 mile run in.It's a bit frosty outside. I have to get the train to London in a couple of hours, then I fly to Slovenia. Yes I am spending the first day of the New Year going to the country I will be moving to in about 4 1/2 months. It is frosty out there this morning and I expect it will be so in Slovenia too. Will try and keep you informed.