Thursday, January 26, 2012

Australia Day 2012

Wow, what a beautiful day! Today is Australia Day and if you take away the people who want to cause controversy or to make a name for themselves and the long drawn out speeches by politicians it all really comes down to celebrating the wonderful country that we live in.

It is all about being grateful that we have the opportunities that we do, the ability to voice our opinions and the freedom to be who we want to be. Yes of course there are things that we don't like or agree with but isn't it nice to know that we can openly discuss them? And like a good Aussie the day is all about spending time with family and friends...mateship is important to Australians.

I was honoured to have been nominated for an Australia Day Award, Citizen of the Year for the City of Darebin. Russ and I headed up to the Preston Town Hall along with other nominees and 100 people who were about to take the Citizenship oath and become Australian Citizens. Boy did that bring back memories from 2005 when I too became an Australian citizen.

Darebin is amazingly multicultural. There are 130,000 people living in the area and they are from 148 different countries, speaking 105 languages. No one can tell me that Australia isn't multicultural!

It was wonderful to see people of every age reading the oath and receiving their certificate, congratulations to all of our new citizens.

As for me, no I wasn't named Citizen of the Year, but I was very proud to stand up there on the stage with the other nominees!

So to all Australians...Happy Australia Day! Oh and now for the traditional Aussie BBQ with home grown Australian Lamb!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Progress is all about Baby Steps

" Even just a little progress, is progress. Even the smallest step forward is very much worth taking, because it maintains a positive momentum." a quote from Ralph Marsden.  How true this statement is.  We all seem to want to get to the finishing point before we have even begun.  I know that I have been guilty of this at different times in my life.  But for the last few months it has been the "baby steps" that have taken me forward.

I do however have certain expectations of myself and those too come in baby steps.  But so far so good!

Beautiful views from the road
 I headed down to Tasmania last weekend, it was supposed to be to race but unfortunately the racing was cancelled due to lack of entries.  But instead of focusing on what I couldn't control I decided that I would go anyhow and train on the roads I was supposed to race.  By accepting that there was nothing that could be done about the racing my training on the weekend was fabulous!  I had perfect weather and fantastic roads to ride.  Yes I was on my own during those long training rides but it gave me a lot of time to reflect on where I have been during the last year and ultimately where I want to be later this year.  That gave me the drive to push myself up those hills in Tasmania and believe me there are some hills!

It was a fabulous weekend that I was able to share with my "Aussie mum", Margo and we had a great weekend spending some quality time together.  But it was also fabulous because I realized that all those baby steps I have been taking are starting to show, with faster average speeds and better handling skills.

I did have my first major crash right after Christmas with not too much damage to my body or the trike (what damage can be done to a 22kilo steel frame?!)  And that was a slight set back, but I knew exactly how to recover from that and was back on the trike taking that next step forward.

I'm now eagerly awaiting the arrival of my new trike.  I am really looking forward to savouring that big step!

It feels great to feel like I am moving forward and I will savour each milestone as I reach it.