Friday 13th June 2003

Supposedly an ‘unlucky’ day for some, but I must say that Lady Luck has been shining on me for the past week or so. I knew, that the week that lay ahead, was going to be hectic and challenging. Having to rganise an event for work, later in the week, was going to take up a considerable amount of my time, but this didn’t mean I would be able to lose focus on my main job role. However, the weekend has arrived again and it is for us to make the most of it.

My sisters will be returning from University this weekend, and how my thoughts drift back to some 12 months previously when I too, was coming back from University. Life, my life was so much different then, and I had no idea. No idea at all of the mountain that lay ahead and the struggles that would need to be faced. I was caught up in the hysteria, that is the greatest show on Earth. The FIFA World Cup 2002. Looking back now, I feel I made the right decisions and followed them through to the end.

As always, there was a turning point in my week. It was aptly Wednesday evening, as I drove home. My Punto was in for its 36k service, so therefore I had a courtesy car. It was an Active Sport Punto, in Spirit Blue. (HGT wannabe anybody?!) Not too bad, and quite nippy, mainly as its a three door. I wasn’t intending to drive over to the Stevenage office that day, purely because I hadn’t considered the journey when refueling that morning. However, due to circumstances beyond one’s control, I was compelled to make that journey and provide my services. The England game was on my mind most of the day, along with the the 43288 jobs that needed to be successfully completed for Thursday evening. I hit the motorway, in good time to make it home, with time to spare for the big qualifier. As you will note from my previous web blogs, I’ve started to listen to BBC Radio 2, and happened to be flicking between BBC Radio 1 with Chris Moyles. I was just cruising on the M25, past junction 20, for the M1, I heard the beginning of a song, that I hadn’t heard for several years. Immediately, my mind was filled with thoughts from 1999, and my time at Henley College. A song, that is able to numb your senses in such a way, is truly magical and an amazing piece of work. I recall vividly, this song being in the charts, and the album, also being extremely popular. In my mind was a picture of me, holding a copy of this album in my hand, not in the trusted compact disc format, but my friend, David Wynn’s Mini Disc. It was one of the few original MD’s that he had actually bought, along with HIStory by Michael Jackson. If I was to look back my life now and cast heavy judgments on all the years of my life, 1999, would be one of the few years when I would take a step back, smile and say, “It was great… it was better than great… I began to learn the lesson…the lesson of life…”

England were lucky to beat Slovakia on Wednesday evening. What now has become, somewhat customary, I viewed the game, next door at my neighbour Dave’s house. The first half was a very poor performance from the home side and all the threatening that the Slovakians had been making, provided them with a goal. The crowd at the Riverside were harshly silenced and I began to wonder if England were going to make any impact in the game whatsoever. There were further moments of nervousness as the away team had another three clear chances of scoring. There was a need for a change, and bringing on Owen Hargreaves for Danny Mills, provided the impetus that had been so lacking. The second half, was much more entertaining, with two great goals from Michael Owen. The penalty decision was debatable (highly in my opinion) but there are times when England need some luck and for a change, the referee was willing to point to the spot. One nil, but the second goal was a much carefully worked affair, with Gerrard crossing the ball, into the air, with Owen, making clear contact to send the ball into the back of the net. After comments from the commentators that England were lacking aerial superiority, with players such as Ferdinand and Campbell missing, Owen was there to prove them wrong. A great way to celebrate your fiftieth game for your country.

Busy weekend, but I will update more over the next few days. Take care for now.

“Live your life without Regret…
Don’t be someone they Forget…”

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