I still have four sleeps until I leave for Australia, but I'm starting to get just a LITTLE bit (read: a BIG bit) excited.
The Gold Coast is actually one of my favourite places in the world so far. It's warm, beachy, and laid-back, but also slightly frenetic. It's also full of tourists, and I love people from other places. I even like Australians. Their accents are far easier to swallow than the nauseating New Zealand whine (note: if you're from somewhere else and have only heard our horrible Prime Minister, John Key speak, that's NOT how most of us talk, but it's still not nice), and every time I visit Goldy, I seem to make a new friend.
Even if it is just with the new girl on the Benefit Cosmetics counter at Myer in Pacific Fair.
A favourite pastime in Goldy is to walk around without shoes. Of course, I won't be able to do that until after my race, just in case, you know. I did it for a while in Auckland but Sara got sick of me coming home with stubbed and bleeding toes. Everything there is better. Even their dollar is worth more than ours.
This trip is poised to have the added extra of seeing athletes I'm used to watching on TV training in the pool next to me. The first time I experienced this was in Melbourne in 2003 when I jumped into a warmup lane at the Victorian Championships with Olympic silver medallist Matt Welsh. In the lane next to me, Michael Klim was adjusting his goggles. I actually let out a little squeal of excitement. While this time I'm obviously keeping a keen eye out for Yuichi Hosoda, the possibility of bumping into Jan Frodeno, Simon Whitfield, and my pick for the women's title, Emma Moffatt, rather excites me. Emma Snowsill is actually my favourite, but I had a dream that Moffatt wins, so that's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Also, I just really want to win. I feel like I've spent my life training for this race, and in a way, I kind of have. Since my selection, I've gone out on a limb to try and make every training session count, and tried to learn from the sessions that didn't go too well. I've been (and will continue to) embracing Luke's "power of positive thinking" theory - something entirely new to me, and of course I'm just going to do everything I can on race day to win. I actually don't mind if I flake out on the finish line, as long as there's no one in front of me.
Anyway, staying up late probably isn't doing me any favours, so on that note, I'm out.
Peace, love and ... gold?