Monday, 2 January 2012

Hungover and happy

Well it’s international hangover appreciation day here in San Diego (in that the number of hangovers is appreciating, not that anyone is enjoying them). This means a few things, one that there will most likely be a run on bacon for that all important breakfast. Two that the grid will see excess electricity demand as EVERYONE hoovers up after the night before and three that I have a US visa again. As of 12.01 am on the 1st of January. I’ve got no problems being in the US and team type one’s p1 visa has no prejudice on my right to remain, exciting hey? If it means I can do 100 miles in shorts on New Year ’s Day, and get a Taco Gobernador afterwards, I’m happy.

Appropriately I began 2012 upside down in a pile of my friends, and strangers on a sofa. I think I’ve spent most of 2011 in the same way, it’s been disorientating and at times confusing but being surrounded by great people, having fun, trying to make a difference and make new friends has made it all a great experience. My world might have turned upside down but it was the people I met who put it the right way up again, and now it’s more stable than it ever was before.

2011 has been a topsy turvy year to say the least. I am not a big one for looking back as there is so much future to look forward to, and we can actually influence that. But I do want to take this chance to say that I have had the most amazing year of my life. With all its ups and downs aside this has been a wonderful experience. For every one person who has hurt me (and especially one particular person) there have been a dozen who have helped me. I’ve learned so much about the fundamental kindness and humanity of people this year and I want to thank each and every person who has helped me. I lost a job, a house, an awful lot of money and lots of things I owned and I gained a vocation, a home, very little money and a lot of things I needed.

So if you’ll allow me; if you’ve sent me an encouraging message, fed me, let me sleep on your floor/sofa/bed/in your barn, passed me a bottle, bought me coffee, fixed my bike, given me insulin, given me sugar, dragged me across a bullring, published my story when someone threatened you, driven me somewhere, sent me peanut butter, taught me about wine or beer or bank accounts or visas or passports or marriage or fishing or growing up, baked me a cake, and indeed if you’ve just sent me your best wishes prayers and greetings or just smiled at me as I went by. Thank you. Oh and if you fired me from your cycling team; Thank you. I’ve really have learned a lot and it’s down to every interaction I’ve had. It would have been easy to give up, to stop riding bikes, to stop trying to help other people with my condition and to lose faith in people. But it’s thanks to the support of everyone else that I haven’t.

2012 is shaping up to be a great year. I’m hugely excited about my new team, I hope I can take just a small fraction of the positivity I’ve received and pass it on. If I can, the world will be a better place. Whenever things get difficult, and they will. I feel that I’ve a great reserve of fortitude to fall back on. All my friends all over the world have done so much for me and I owe it to them to succeed. I hope I can catch up with more of you in 2012, I hope we can share a meal and conversation as well as morals and compassion.

Stay tuned for more updates on the team, on how you can get involved, on the schedule and on the adventures we’re planning. As always, get in touch if you’ve any ideas/questions/burning issues to raise. For now, bon any nou, feliz año Nuevo, bonne année and happy New Year. I hope it brings all of you health and happiness.

-yep typed it with my thumbs: they're what makes us better than apes

Location:On a train to la

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