Rob’s Weekly Blog and Training Update w/c 08/05/16

Monday 9th May 7pm Athletic Club.

We have some decent weather at lets so lets make the best of it.

Wednesday 11th May. 7pm Athletic Club.

A little more core work and exercises followed by 4 x 4 mins/ 2 min rec. I’m quite aware that the small area we use next to the cricket pitch is not too good of a surface. I’ll go down early and have a look around but it might turn out that the back football field if free may be better suited for what I have in mind, just keep your eyes open.

A few words from Rob…

Imagine it’s 7 in the morning and you’re in a train station on the banks of the R Limpopo awaiting passport clearance to go from South Africa to Zimbabwe. I’m on the most luxurious train journey in the world but at the moment I’m not going anywhere. It has taken 4hrs to process 60 passports and my friend Cedrick has just said we are now good to go but there is no need to hurry because we are on holiday. Cedrick ( my best friend!!) is a Sergeant Major in the Zimbabwe army/border control and we are starting to bond!! His Mum would have been proud of him when his uniform was new and clean ( 10 years ago) but just at the moment he didn’t look quite at his best, far from it. His ambition is to own a small piece of land and grow his own fruit and vegetables, he would then try and find a local farmer who had some cows so he could get lots of muck to put on the soil and grow the best food in his village. Well this was Cedricks lucky day because I told him I used to look after hundreds of cows and with a bit of careful planning and a few back handers ( this last bit is important in Africa!) I could supply him with the biggest pile of manure beyond his wildest dreams. I have never met anyone so excited about a pile of manure!

Anyway, back to business. Cedrick also told me we had a slight problem, there was a national railway strike but seeing their President (bless him ) had sold the last passenger train to China 3 months earlier then there shouldn’t be many delays. Actually we were the only train to pass this way for 3 days and you could tell because the station was empty, it was probably the emptiest station I’d ever seen. I eased Cedricks worries and said as I was from the UK I was quite used to strikes and as a nation we were quite good at it. I also knew we had a French couple on board and the longer we were delayed the happier I became. ( there was rail strike the last time I went to Paris).

It was getting hotter and later in the morning so I paced the platform, this was approximately 400 metres long so If we were to be still here at 9am then six times up and down would be just about the right distance for a parkrun! The surface was good, I was starting to get excited so I was thinking about getting some running kit on. It was then when I noticed we didn’t have an engine, we hadn’t had one since 2am but apparently this can happen in Africa, engines just disappear. So it’s back to Cedrick who is trying to find out how many forms he requires to fill in to import manure from the UK. Cedrick introduces me to his 2nd in command who is a very keen fisher man, there is nothing he likes better than going into the Limpopo and pulling out big chunks of Catfish which he sells in the local market. The only problem is, he does this while Cedrick wants him to be at work and by what I could make out this caused a bit of friction from time to time. Cedrick didn’t like to complain too much because at least he did get his fish for free. Time is moving on, nobody seems to be too concerned, not even our French friends but an engine does turn up and after a few cups of tea we start to move. I didn’t know being in a station for such a long time could be so much fun.