Thursday, 21 October 2010

A new reality

OK. I know it's been forever since I last wrote anything or uploaded anything on my blog. It is not that I did not care or it has not been in my mind.

But as it turns out I am a private person. Who has to make sense of what is happening in her life before I am ready or able to share it with others. Whether in blog form, or in chats with friends, or whatever.

And the past, OK, let's see, gulp!, almost six months, have seen my life turn upside down in ways I would not have thought possible a few years ago. Quitting my job, leaving my hometown, closing my flat, saying goodbye to friends and family (well, I do see them every couple of months luckily!), moving to another country with - as I was shocked to find out - a hugely different culture than that of Greece, moving in with my great boyfriend, trying out what living together feels like (it's all good, folks!), moving homes a couple of times in three months, looking for a job, buying a car and learning to drive on the right, taking up cooking (yes me, unbelievable, I know!). Well, basically starting out all over again.

I hope you will appreciate that I was at a bit of a loss to write anything.

I mean, what to say and what to think and what to feel? Did I mention everything is different here (here being the U.K. of course!) than in Greece? Which at the present time is definitely not a bad thing, still it does take time to adjust to the new circumstances. Like, passersby actually smiling and saying hello when I am walking Lisa in the nearby Marston, Oxford paths, and yes, having to stick to established processes and procedures a whole lot more than in Greece, where everyone just seems to be busy trying to find a way to bypass them.

Running has been one of the few carefully selected things that I have kept intact in my new life and has actually served as a welcome link between this new life and the old one. Getting my new life in balance is still a work in progress, like finding a job in Oxford at the moment is a bit of a sticky subject although I am still happy pursuing my freelance writing assignments.

Fortunately running never fails to do wonders for me as my most precious hour of meditation and connecting with my inner self, when I can just clear my head from all outside distractions and images and thoughts. That's why I almost religiously followed my marathon training programme all through the summer, even when I knew we were moving to a new house and had no bed to sleep in (or any other furniture for that matter) and we would have to get one asap or else sleep on the floor or at best on the air mattress (ouch! my back hurts just thinking of this as an option)!

This season's daily marathon programme provided a much needed sense of stability and continuity, and for this, regardless of how I actually do in the race which is coming up next Sunday (I am talking about the Athens Classic Marathon), I consider it the most succesful and meaningful marathon preparation that I have ever completed.

A big thanks to Colin for being there, for the understanding and for sticking through my long sessions and picking me up from the Iffley Road track when I was too tired to cycle home after tough sessions, and to Lisa the dog, who was my most enthusiastic and bubbliest of running partners during my easy runs. Also, big thanks are due to the Coach (Dimitris Theodorides) for his attention and breaking my stress with humour when necessary, to Denise Thomas of Peak Sporting Performance for the  much-needed sport massages, and to the Headington Road Runners for making me feel at home in my new running milieu. 

I feel blessed and grateful. 

The Oxford University Iffley Road track, where I did most of my interval training. Very inspiring surroundings, since it is here that Sir Roger Banister ran the first sub-4 minute mile.


  1. Hi Natasha!
    Good luck in you new adventure! GMT+1, miles, pound sterlings, ounces, driving wrongly.. yes seems not to be easy!

    I update you from the last mail. Last weekend I went to Amsterdam to run the marathon of my life and I got the flu. I didn't started because I was totally unable of trying anything. I felt really bad but that's not the end of the world.

  2. Daniel. Hi! You have been on my mind so much these days. After I sent you the last email, my Dad got hospitalised (luckily he is better now), and then my stepmom (she will have surgery next week). And guess what? I got the flu just before Athens too! Such bad luck! Anyway, I will write about it tomorrow, today there is something else on my mind! I ma thinking of running Pisa on Dec 18th, just to capitalise on my training. I have unfinished business with the marathon this year!

  3. Hi! I'm happy to hear your family is fine. I'm thinking also in trying anything else. I felt week for some days and I was involved in the marriage of my best friend. I probably will try a marathon on a track. That's 105.5 laps. It will take place on a track which is 25' minutes from home. Easy, just take the underground and run. No trips, no risks!