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Welcome back

Posted: 4/4/2009

Hi all and welcome back to my blog. I need to welcome myself back also.

I am at Sydney airport on my way back from two Queensland conferences: one in Brisbane for a pharmaceutical company and one in Port Douglas for mortgage brokers. It was a very social trip for me with conference functions to attend each night.

I spent five days in Port Douglas last year on holiday so it was nice to be up there again, with a bike this time. I put one good road ride in as well as a good beach run on the second day so I feel good. I haven't trained for the last couple of weeks and it starts to play with my head a bit.

There have been lots of changes in our household over the last couple of months. After promising Penni that life would be all about her when I retired from skiing, cycling and cancer really took over. So I have been working hard to deliver this year. Still, she has been very busy as I am often away speaking and there are two kids to look after now plus a book to write. I'm not sure she feels more relaxed! The book project is starting to gain momentum though and we are getting more organised.

For the first time in a while I don't really have any athletic goals. There are still a few fun things going on though with a 100km mountain bike race in Canberra and a possible trip to Canada to ride in a cancer fundraiser. I might even drop into Vancouver to try and line up some jobs for the Games next year. Penni and I would both like to be there for a few months and take the kids as well.

The other big change involves my dad who had an accident at home and ended up with a spinal injury. He has been in hospital for almost three weeks already and although there has been some improvement, he still can't really move his arms or legs much at all. It has been a huge upheaval for my mum who spends most of her time in Sydney with dad but also for my little family, with Penni and Rowdy living on the South Coast looking after my parents' property and dogs until mid-May. Matilda and I go down there when we can.

We are hopeful that dad's condition will improve but I'm sure life for him and mum will be very different.

Matilda and Rowdy are growing up and it is fun to play with both of them. Matilda is riding her pedal-less bike, balancing well and rolling along with both feet off the ground. Rowdy is sleeping through the night and loves to spend his days rolling on the floor, lying on his tummy and wriggling out of his rocker.

Well that's about all my news for now. I promise to write more soon.


6 Comments Posted

Vic Plant | Sunday, 5 April 2009 3:40:22 PM
Hi Michael,
Good to catch up with what you've been doing again lately. Nice to hear that you are getting some time together as a family and that you also have some plans in the pipeline for next year! My thoughts are with you and your family, especially your Dad at the moment.
C.Bear | Sunday, 19 April 2009 8:21:52 AM
Ello Michael,

This is an old mate of urs. We use to reside in The Pistol Club together years ago.
Having just visited Jindabyne and Sport&Wrecked. I was happy to see all the new building and Milton Lodge.

Im sorry to hear your Dad isnt well. I hope things get better soon.
Congratulations on your marriage and your 2 children look gorgeous.
It was nice to read up on all your news.
Good on you Michael.

Clare Bear (ex camp cook)
Skid Marc Romero | Wednesday, 22 April 2009 3:32:27 AM

What up. Met Eric Bickerton at Winter Park this past winter. Gave him a DVD of "Heroes of the Slopes". I'm giving school presentations these days with the DVD/film and also seeking out adult gigs. Any advice or thoughts for me Mr. rubber suit? Looks like you've recovered and are doing well. Great news. Let me know what up Dad. "You'd gamble or give anything to be in with the better half. But how many friends must I have to begin with to make you laugh"
Steph and Sean | Friday, 24 April 2009 7:44:18 PM
Hi Michael,

Oh crap we am really sorry to hear about your Dad. Having been through that all we know how hard the coming months will be for everyone including your Mum and all the family.

I remember talking to your Dad at lunch on the rainy day we did the garden makeover about his car accident and Sean's injury etc. It struck me at the time that he had a fabulous attitude. I hope he can draw on that again with this injury and get the best outcome possible.

Please send our thoughts and best wishes to him and your Mum. If there's anything we can do to help or anyone needs to chat just give us a call.

Best regards, Steph
Erika | Wednesday, 15 July 2009 6:36:50 AM
Thank you so much for coming to see my daughter in hospital. A visit from you has picked her up so much. There will be ups and downs but her attitude is amazing. Best thing is she's up and walking. I wish you and your family all the best, and pray that your Dad will make good progress. xx
Anonymous | Thursday, 18 March 2010 8:42:34 AM
Hello michael. i am a student at Redlands in sydney cremorne. i was at the national young leaders day. i was very inspirered on all that you accomplished and that you just said some great points on leadership and always finding a solution to something if your stuck. i just wanted to know if by any chance you could just tell me some of your main qualities that you have. Thank you some much foe coming to the leaders day thing and thanks alot for inspirering me like that. this is for a school project the qualities thing. thanks.