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Life’s a beach « James Cunnama’s Blog


Life’s a beach



The Beach House

After a very successful Embrunman and a short farewell trip to Leysin, I was unceremoniously evicted from Europe due to my visa reaching its expiration date… Okay, so I wasn’t evicted, I left voluntarily, but not willingly – the threat of deportation and never being allowed back in Switzerland kept me from pushing my luck. Regardless, it was time to leave. Which meant I had to decide where to go…


Home (SA) was not a great option, seeing as it is still winter, albeit the very mild winter of South Africa, so I decided on the US – events to choose from, people to stay and train with and the fact that I had a visa in passport already. (Of course, that was only a small comfort, as they are pains to point out that a visa does not guarantee entry, which is still subject to multiple entry criteria – it would be a nervous James who got off the plane in New York! Needless to say, I made it through immigration, otherwise this blog would certainly have a different title (and tone!).)

So now I am at my side-kick’s house in Normandy Beach, New Jersey. Scott and I are back into the training hard for the upcoming Rev3 race in Cedar Point, Ohio, with Bek hanging around here too, completing the Super-hero trio. Normandy Beach, and New Jersey itself has been quite a change from Switzerland, most notably due the total lack of anything resembling a hill (Scott actually told me he has done ‘hill’ repeats up and down the bridge over the river!). But there is plenty of good riding in the countryside, a great outdoor pool at the nearby Atlantic Club (which will soon become a covered ‘bubble pool’ when the weather gets worse – thank goodness!) and we have some good running with a track nearby – all of which we are making the most of as we build on the gains from a summer in the Swiss mountains.

The Beach House, as it is fondly known by all, is a special place indeed. Scott stays here all the time, but the rest of the family – his dad and nurturing (and slightly batty) mother, his brother with his wife and two cute kids (who call me Batman), his pregnant sister with her hubby, and various other friends and relations make the short trip down every weekend and the house is transformed into an energetic, noisy, colourful and vibrant mix of characters, which is incredibly entertaining, if a little exhausting! Although I am not much a beach person, and do miss the mountains a little, we are only a 2min walk from the beach which is great for the hot summer days we are currently experiencing and after a summer in the mountains, it is a refreshing change.



My favourite feature of the house - The Magic Closet...



That's my kind of magic... always fully stocked!










I am here for at least 3 more weeks, and next weekend promises to be the craziest of the lot in the DeFilippis Beach House as it is Labor (or Labour ;) ) Day weekend (Monday being Labor Day), which signifies the end of Summer and it is apparently followed by ‘tumbleweed Tuesday’ as this summer town becomes a ghost town again for another 9 months… The weekend will be a good one, but I can’t say I am dreading the peace and quiet which will follow it…

Bek returns today from her impressive win at Louisville, and then ‘Super-hero camp’ will be complete again – Onward and upward…



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