Saturday, 20 February 2010

The Climb


This is not a picture of me executing some fine overhang-conquering free climb. I’m in the picture below, staring up into a dark dead-end. But I was climbing and, as my fingers, hands and arms testify as I type, this evening was an upper-body workout unlike any I’ve had in a while.

A week or so back – which could mean anything up to a month ago! – a co-worker mentioned they had discovered a neighbour was involved in a new indoor climbing venture in Mostar. One thing led to another and a few of us went ago to check the venue out and ask about bring a group of young people along from Klub Novi Most. This seemed like the first request of its kind as the owners had to go away a work out what price they’d charge for a one-off group visit.

Tonight, somewhere on the campus of Univerziteta Džemal Bijedić in Mostar, a dozen young people and youth leaders got to play at being monkeys! It was all good, relaxed fun, with no accidents or injuries. But it was the sort of fun that it sadly outlawed these days in the UK. I remember a couple of school climbing trips I went on as an early teen; they were to real rocks, but they presented a similar challenge to tonight’s trip. Back then free climbing was an option so long as you could prove to the teacher you were sensible. These days you’d need ropes and safety ropes to tackle anything similar. And let’s not even get started on the prohibitive insurance requirements. I could rant on...

Instead, let’s celebrate a new facility in Mostar, one that I’m sure we’ll make use of again. And with that in mind perhaps I should drag the exercise regime I dreamed up from the realm of good intentions into the reality of my daily schedule!


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