Some athletes go there because that’s all they can get into. There are a lot of athletes and only 8 lanes on a track. Golden League meets and Super Grand Prix meets are tough when you aren’t top in the world. Some athletes go in between big meets because going to a small meet is still better than housing and feeding yourself in between competitions. Other athletes have realized that it’s easier to make more money coming in first at a small meet than sixth at a Golden League meet. And still other athletes, especially field event athletes, have no choice when the meets that have their events are few and far between. One of the above reasons, or some combination, brings most athletes to a meet in a place that they can’t find on a map at least a few times a season. I’m at that time in my season now.
There are probably not many meets on the European circuit I haven’t been to. Thanks to my age and my rollercoaster of a career, I have pretty much seen and been to them all. Being here now is much more enjoyable because I understand their purpose and I can reap the benefits. Sure, my friends and colleagues might be on Eurosport this weekend, but I had no desire to test out how fast I was at this point of the season in front of millions of people. (and THANK GOD I didn’t.) I’ll trade the 4 star hotel for the ability to plop myself down in a quaint café and drink a cappuccino for 1 euro. Like I said, there are no tourists in these places! And most of all, I can relax because the stress level just isn’t the same. I’m still trying to figure out how to recharge my battery and unfortunately the body is taking its sweet time with that one.
I’ll be back for the grand finale in a couple weeks and there will be no hiding at that meet. Until then, cut me some slack if you happen to uncover any meet results during this time. The internet does a good job finding out stuff even when a GPS can’t locate you.
P.S. I've never had chitlins in my life...but I wonder if they taste better than horse. Anybody know???