It feels like life has been on fast forward since arriving home from Rio.  With welcome home functions, meeting with friends and family to share my experience, it’s hard trying to get back to a normal life.  But there have been some amazing functions that are really a once in a lifetime experience, with a few more to come!

It all started with an invite to take part in the motorcade of the AFL Grand Final, to watch the game and then an invite to the AFL VIP marquis in the September Club.  I must say I had a good time with Matt Lewis (wheelchair rugby), Gemma Etheridge and Alicia Quirk (Olympic Women’s Rugby Seven’s), having an unknown number of photos with our medals!  But the amazing part of the day was being driven from under the MCG onto the field and the roar of 99,981 people.  WOW that was incredible!!  But to see the Bulldogs win over Sydney and have their first Grand Final win in 61 years was amazing!

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The second incredible day was the Victorian Welcome Home Parade and luncheon.  It certainly wasn’t the warmest of days but the pride I felt while walking down Bourke St. Mall with confetti flying everywhere, the public lining the street, waving Aussie flags and clapping was very overwhelming.  There were quite a few people there that I knew including family members…grandson Cooper, granddaughter Georgia, daughter-in-law Chrissy and our other nanna Sharyn and that was fantastic!

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It was so great to be able to talk to, have pictures taken and sign autographs with the people of Victoria who had come to say hello and then it was into the Myer building to meet with the Premier, MP’s and other dignitaries.

I have also been trying to respond to all the emails I received but I’m afraid that I have failed in that endeavour so far, but hopefully will get to all of them eventually!  I also wanted to try and do a bit of training so got back to the pool, commuting by bike and have done a couple of other rides. I’ve also done a few interviews not only with the local paper but also radio in Adelaide.

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Then the my body decided it was time for a break and this past weekend I was floored by sickness! I don’t get sick very often in fact I think I can recall on one hand in the last 20 years that I have been sick, so I have taken 2 days and done absolutely nothing.  First time I have done that in years!  It was certainly needed as the next couple of weeks are just as busy as the last couple!

It is amazing what I have been invited to and asked to take part in but I have had to say no to a number of things.  Sometimes there just isn’t enough time in a day.  But I am headed on Thursday night to a function put on by my cycling club St. Kilda celebrating the champions of the club, then it’s on to The Great Australian’s Gala Ball in support of an initiative run by the Jesuit Social Services called Growing Hope.  This program works with some of the most disadvantaged young people in the nation. Many have suffered family violence, abuse, neglect and homelessness – often leading to mental illness, self-harm, drug/alcohol abuse and, in extreme cases, suicide or attempted suicide.
Through counselling, community connection and practical programs that deliver employment and life skills, helping young people get back on track and find direction in their lives.  This is definitely a program I feel deserves my attention!

The following day I am hosting 100 people for a sit down lunch in order to present 25 scholarships to people living with MS.  These funds were raised through my charity 24 Hour Mega Swim, something I am passionate about.  After that I have the honour of being asked to attend the UCI Gala Dinner and awards in Abu Dhabi!  This is exciting as I will be able to meet some of the top riders in the world and witness the naming of the riders of the year and team of the year!  Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would ever be heading to Abu Dhabi and staying at one of the most luxurious hotels in the world the St. Regis .

So a busy time ahead indeed.  So stay tuned for an update after that trip!

 

About the author : CarolC

11 Comments

  1. Crawford Jenkins 12/10/2016 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    Wow what a schedule – if I promise to carry your suitcase can I come? Your dedication to the cause is inspiring for everyone. You deserve every accolade that comes your way.,

    Crawford.

    • CarolC 13/10/2016 at 1:14 am - Reply

      Thanks Crawford, I wish I had a dollar for every time people asked to carry my suitcase!!! Wish I could take everyone!

  2. Joycelyn 12/10/2016 at 6:50 pm - Reply

    Wow that is amazing Carol. What wonderful experiences you are having. I will stay tuned to hear more of your adventures. Cheers Joycelyn x

    • CarolC 13/10/2016 at 1:13 am - Reply

      Thanks Joycelyn and I will update about the next adventures but also more indepth about my races over there!

  3. Shaz 13/10/2016 at 7:28 am - Reply

    Carol, you are one truly amazing and inspirational woman. Your dedication to your sport; your charities, your family, and everything else you’re involved in is mind blowing to say the least. You are a true super star and deserve everything that comes your way. Enjoy every moment but be kind to yourself and take some time out for yourself to rest. People understand if you dont answer emails and return calls.I know you try so hard to get back to them all. I love you Caz and want you to know that I appreciate very much your time and support when you have such a hectic schedule youself. You rest up now and thanks so much for all you do. XXSHAZ

    • CarolC 16/10/2016 at 11:06 am - Reply

      Thanks Shaz! It’s also time to spend some time with family! Love you too xxxx

  4. Dave Carey 13/10/2016 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    Greetings from Canada, congratulations, we saw you on the Toronto News CityTV when you won the gold….sorry but the story was not about you but about the Canadian woman on the podium with you….still we felt proud seeing you get your award and knowing that we are your friends…Dave & Debbie Carey

    • CarolC 16/10/2016 at 11:04 am - Reply

      Thanks Dave, in actual fact all three of us on the podium were Canadian in background! Make’em tough in Canada!

  5. Debbie Carey 13/10/2016 at 7:48 pm - Reply

    You are an inspiration to so many. Enjoy Abu Dhabi and keep up your incredible work. You are amazing my friend.

    • CarolC 16/10/2016 at 11:03 am - Reply

      Thanks Debbie

  6. Tina 19/10/2016 at 9:51 am - Reply

    Rollercoaster whirlwind since arriving home. With even my Bendigo staffer recognising you on the parade day! Was so great to see and hear you up on the stage with all the green and gold tinsel flying everywhere. Time for a rest me thinks. At least two days very soon. You were never going to live an ordinary life…. ordinary time out is deserved 😉 Hugs! x

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