Firstly, work for twelve hours through the night, go home, catch two or three hours of sleep & then get up & do the MTB leg of a multisport race in the midday heat. Or secondly, get home, watch the ABs beat Ireland with some mates until 8.30, once again catch two hours of sleep, get up, pack & go to Sydney. As my grandfather (whom I’ve just visited in Sydney) would say – happy days.
The local multisport event, Steelman Ironmaiden (www.steelmanironmaiden.co.nz) has been running for a few years now & I was talked in to doing the MTB leg (there were also a road ride, a kayak down the Waikato & a run through the countryside back in to Waiuku to finish) with a Melters B-Shift (either current or past) team. A slow ride on the road helping to fix other’s punctures & a good kayak later & I was lucky enough to be starting in the latter half of the field for the MTB – good for the ego as I passed twenty-five others on the 33 km course. I was pleased with an hour and a half for the course, as with a lack of sleep I was hardly in peak condition (not that my body has any idea what peak condition is). It must be said however, that MTB was a bit of a misnomer for the course – I think I spent well over half of the time in the big chainring on the mostly gravel & sealed roads of the course. Never mind, it was an awful lot of fun & we were pleased to finish tenth of about twenty teams in our category.
A couple of day shifts, four days off at home with a bit of singlespeeding at Puni thrown in (with a massive dose of hayfever that managed to swell my right eye closed), two more night shifts & then it was off to NSW for five days. The reason for the trip was the final instalment of the graduate course at work (always to catch up with other young graduates from around the business). Coincidentally, Mum was also in Sydney for two weeks staying with her family so it was great to catch up with all of Mum’s immediate family. Also got to catch up with a couple of ex-NZSteel mates that are now working at Port Kembla – funnily enough, unbeknown to them, until we met up for a beer, was that they live within about a hundred metres of each other.