And a good evening to you from across the Pond. Today was a GREAT day all around. First off, we had an uber-productive day in the office – it absolutely FLEW by, and I felt like we turned the dial again. Couple that with some sushi (thanks, Donkapotamus – but you are still a CNN Doctor who plays golf in Fiji), a freshly cleaned water bottle (long story, but my Nalgene was basically gray from lack of santitation…mmmm…tasty), and a latte, and you’ve got a recipe for success.
Also, continuing on the road to recovery, I ran for 75 seconds today! I then tried another 30, but I started to feel some light pressure in the foot, so I wound it back down. Today was 2.5 km (down from 3 km yesterday), but I am still feeling good about things. The best part was that I was up at 6 to knock it out. Tomorrow I’m getting up at 6 again. That means Price is only being my start time by about 2 hours (but who really wants to bike 187 miles every morning, anyway?).
Third – AFD!!!! Legit this time…whistles and bells, please. And a gin & tonic to celebrate.
Fourth-and most important – we caught a footy match! So Lord G (aka Mark Goodyer) was able to “negotiate” 20 quid seats in the home stands for Leyton Orient vs. Charlton. So a few points on this:
1. In England, there are more soccer leagues than there are sheep in New Zealand.
2. The top league is called the Premiership, which consists of 20 teams (like Arsenal, Chelsea, Man United, etc.). The top 4 teams from this league play in the Champions League, which encapsulates the best teams of the top divisions in each country.
3. The team we saw tonight was in the First Division, which is 2 levels down from the Premiership (the level between them is called the Championship – NOT to be confused with the Champions League).
4. I still honestly DO NOT GET the offsides rule.
5. When in doubt on the soccer field (over here called the pitch), just throw yourself to the ground, act like you’ve been stabbed, and then scream at the ref whenever he doesn’t give you the call. That happens about 6,000 times a match.
6. At footy matches – if you are ever in doubt as to what to say, just repeat the “f-bomb” over and over. This includes children under the age of ten. Hey, start ‘em young, I guess…
Twenty of us from work went, and talk about a hoot. It was SO MUCH fun! The crowd was really into it, chanting constantly. An interesting side note is that the AWAY fans are always much rowdier, as they are the die hards willing to travel into enemy territory. This is the part where Americans say, “Come on, it’s not inner city Baltimore!” And this is the part where I say, “Wow – I’ve never seen a sporting event where there are more police than spectators (all in riot gear) and where they are checking the equipment (including the gurney lifter) in all EIGHT ambulances parked outside. Sean’s advice to me, “You can’t stop them – just cover your internal organs.”
We ate like kings, throwing down a meat pie (I got meat and potato – JT had steak and kidney – she won), a massive hot dog (the bread was like a baguette), and a bag of Malteasers (their version of Whoppers). It is worth noting that, right now, my stomach feels like I ate an expandable brick – I won’t need food for about another 6 years (that’s right, T-Rowe – CHUUUUUBBBBBBBY BUUUUUNNNNYYYY).
And even though the home team lost, there were some great shots, all the while chanting with the crowd (the cheer was really complicated – you basically just yelled “Orient” over and over in different octaves. That being said, it is pretty cool – and easy to remember).
Best off all, at the end of the night, we actually got onto the pitch for a photo!
The train back was crazy – we waited for about 20 minutes just to get into the Tube station. That being said, it was actually quite orderly and much less in the way of hooligan shenanigans than I expected.
Dad, Pattie – How 'bout those scrimmage updates?
Dinger – you KNOW the update we want from you. Let’s go, Kyle – we want details…
Okay, that’s all the news that’s fit to print. Chat with you tomorrow!
Sam and Jenny (aka Beckham and Posh)