Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Home Sweet Home

That's where I want to be right now; home.

Sorry about disappearing for a while there. I only packed my iTouch in anticipation of some crazy, unorganized travel with out realizing that I couldn’t actually update my blog with it. I can write in the title section but not in the content section. Oh well, I'm guessing everyone will survive just fine.

Aside from the blogging withdrawals, the last few weeks have been memorable. Paris with Ryan and Emily- Absolute blast. Hanging out in the Netherlands with Tejay, Ryan, and Emily- Absolute blast. GP Tell- Worst race of the season by far on the bike but one of my favorites off the bike. The legs were terrible but waking up to see pointy peaks shrouded in clouds every morning and hanging out with a fun group of guys keeps the spirits up even when the form is down. So basically it was a blast.

After all that yada, I spent a week up at the national team house in Belgium trying to kick a nasty cold I picked up mid way through GP Tell and spending way too much time shooing the sh*t with the guys on all the coffee shop rides. Time flies when you're having fun....

And now.... I'm back, home sweet home, in Marseille. And after a full day of train travel, I must say, as I lay here on my 2 inch thick foam pad of a bed: I just want to go home. Like home, home. The kind of home where there is always someone to pick me up from the airport, puppy dogs to play with, friends to hike with, and a girl to snuggle with. The home where I have every inch of the maze of roads with in 100 miles memorized like the back of my way too tan hand and I actually run into people out on the road whom I want to chat with (opposed to the old cycle stalkers around here). I've been playing this euro trip game for quite some time now, and now, faced with a September 100% void of all racing, I'm ready to pack it up and slap on the official Alex Howes seal of completion on this mini odyssey.

Not that anyone has asked but, I'd say I've pretty much done it all over here. Am I satisfied with my season? Hell no. Results wise I plan on sweeping this season under the rug ASAP. However, as far as (and I say this at the risk of sounding like some sort of liberal hippy douche) growing as person, the last 8 months are untouchable. I went 2 days with out food, wove a hammock, read 16 books, broke 7 chains 1 wheel and 1 bike, had 1500 euro worth of crap stolen, swam in the Atlantic and the med, sampled every type of beer at the grocery store (don't worry there are only 12 kinds), climbed the local mountain, busted the tail light of a team car with my break hood, won a trophy, cut my own hair 4 times, bought my first real saw and hammer (which I still need to figure out how I'm getting home...), visited 8 countries, walked the Luvre, laughed myself into shape, actually cracked, learned how to talk with an Irish accent, threw a bag of trash 50m and scored, more or less learned French, finished a coloring book, watched 106 movies and every episode of south park, spent a full week carving a small statue and threw it in the river, got way too good at sewing, and got beat up by an old Irish woman. I'm not saying I've done it all and I'm done here. Hell no, I'm just getting started. But, damnit I'm beat. I'm ready for a break and a burrito and some State side adventures.

I'll keep you posted but I think my butt will be planted on a familiar couch soon,

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