New Beginnings

The past few weeks have been frantic, after a great few days of catching up chilling out and sleeping in Barbados we flew home to a fantastic welcome in Dublin airport.  It was quite surreal to have so many family and friends awaiting my arrival in the terminal.  It was fantastic to see everybody and I really appreciate the effort they all went to to travel all the way to Dublin.

Next day though I was back to reality and sitting at my desk in work.  Strangely it all felt very normal nothing new or different, just the same old.  It was nice to be back but it was also to be off the following day to Celebrate St. Patrick’s day.  Each year for the past 3 I have marched in the parade with the local Coast Guard unit, this year in honour of my achievement I was given the honour of leading the unit, so after a short recap on all the commands I managed to stay in step (most of the time) and not fall over when giving the salute.

It was back to work the next day to start making up some lost time and start putting the final touches to ULAC to get ready for what is looking like a busy season ahead.  There is no rest for the wicked!!

As if I wasn’t busy enough with work I paid a visit to Colaiste Choilm in Cork last week to give my first talk about the row to a group of transition year students.  They had followed the website during the crossing so it was great o pop in and give them some more info about the trip.

While I was in Cork I also got the fantastic news that my very goods friends the Whytes had a beautiful baby girl, ‘Ban Beag’.   Now they will have to suffer the sleepless nights!  But unlike me they will wake each morning to see the smiling face of their little girl looking back at them.  My big adventure is over, for now, but theirs is only beginning!

The arrival of the little bundle of joy had the knock on effect that they did miss my welcome home party, but I will forgive them this time.  Lots of family and friends did make it along and it was a fantastic night.  The Lakeside Hotel did a great job of welcoming all the guests and provide great food and of course drink for everybody until the early hours of the morning.  The night was made all the more memorable by the 2 fantastic cakes, one for my welcome home and one for Andree’s birthday.  The welcome home cake was my favourite, Chocolate biscuit cake, and was made and decorated my the very talented Melissa from Cakes of Distinction in my home town of Cobh.  The brilliantly decorated birthday cake was put together by my very creative and skilled sister in law, Mary, the clever Triathlon inspired design was a big hit.  Rumour has it some of the cake even made it out on the tri-club cycle on Sunday morning to help fuel the athletes.

At this stage life is almost fully back to normal, a couple of functions in next couple of weeks to celebrate the row and then it will, as it already has started to do, fade and become but a memory, one that will no less live on for a very long time.  Thankfully I also have about 2,000 photos to help jog my memory.

But don’t worry plans are already afoot to continue my obsession with adventure, this time closer to home, still in a boat but this time facing the right direction!!

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