I’ve been out of Afghanistan now for almost four weeks and I’m finally starting to relax. Coming home has been a relief above all else. I feel that I have taken the support of my friends and family for granted a bit and it feels amazing to be next to loved ones again. I’ve been too busy laughing, socializing and running to blog lately, but here is a brief recap of my journey back to real life! I’ve also reflected on some of the benefits of trail running at the end of the post – thanks for reading!!!
Step 1: Kabul to Hong Kong
I began my post-Afghan life with some serious debauchery in Hong Kong where I was introduced to the strange and wonderful world of the Rugby Sevens. If you haven’t been before, be warned: it is impossible to be sufficiently warned! My girlfriends and I (including a couple of RacingThePlanet friends) all went as different Disney characters. Amidst the sexy and seductive Jessica Rabbit, the gorgeous Ariel, the cheeky and adorable Betty Rubble, and the mischievous Minnie Mouse, there was me – the Road Runner (beep beep!!).
I have seen a lot of things in my life, but I have never seen anything like the South Stands at the Rugby Sevens. In the row in front of us was a group of half-naked 20-something year olds dressed as angels with sayings such as “a little piece of heaven” scrawled across their hair-free chests. By about 10 am, most of them had either urinated or vomited in the stands (gross). Then there were the baywatch boys, top gun crews, black swans (males and females), tarzans and janes, superstars of all varieties and even some people dressed as tesco horse meat, all in various stages of drunkenness. I am pleased to say that I made it until about 3pm before I bailed for an afternoon nap in my bird’s nest back at the Mandarin Oriental. Beep beep!