I've spent my first night in Budapest, having arrived yesterday. It was a bit of·a stressed flight coming over but it all worked out. Except for being short a bag. Other than that, all is well. My bag arrived today, which was unexpected. My coach had to get a bit assertive with the airport staff to get it. Tomorrow the women are up in the semi-final. I compete the following day (Friday). I felt better today than I did in Italy which is a positive sign. In Italy I was a bit tired and John, our coach, thought I looked worn down. I am hoping to having a strong meet here, of course. I guess that goes without saying. This time, I feel that pressure more than normal, simply because despite a good pre-season and a lot of work, I have not performed well yet. I have had good workouts and am fit. I've had good technical training as well. For whatever reason, whether psychological or otherwise, I just have not shown it yet.
This happened in the beginning of 2009 as well. And I finished that season really strong, so I hope to see that turn around here. We have a long season that lasts until October, and although I feel anxious, I don't believe that allowing the stress to take over will benefit me at all. Having said that, the stress never disapears. Followin Budapest, I will train in Ottawa for two weeks, then go to Montreal for fencing nationals. From there, I head to China for another World Cup. This gives one month away from home which is a long stretch. I'd like to finish this stretch with some strong progression.
Last week, I found out my high school is adding me to their Wall of Fame which is pretty cool. I went to Chestermere High School (for all but one semester). It was a great school to go to, mostly due to a few special teachers and a number of great friends. It's nice to think that I am still close with some of those teachers, and a number of my friends from 10 years ago, are still my close colleagues today. Even funnier, I went to school with some of them since grade 1. Wow! I also went to Cochrane High for a semester. It is a great school as well. More for the quality of programs it offers. And Cochrane is a strong community to be a part of. So I get to enjoy two reunions this summer! On a final note, the initial steps toward a 2011 fundraiser are progressing quickly. November 19 is the date, so mark it down if you can. The aim for this evening is to create as interactive and entertaining evening for the audience. I shouldn't give details yet, but I think it will be a special night that will help me take the final steps to qualify for London 2012. That's it for now. Take care. Josh.