Kevin McShane — "Watch your thoughts, they become words"

Sunday June 19th, 2011

Sunday June 19th, 2011

Everyone woke up today a little late then usual… just in time for lunch actually! We left the Hotel Park in Veles at 12:30, loaded our stuff into the trailer behind the Sprinter, and then walked to lunch. Lunch consisted of the usual salads, cheese, bread, and meat… and yes the chicken was bomb, but there was also a new item- Omelet’s!  We had chicken and cheese omelets and some people ordered various types of meat and veggies and sides. The waiter misunderstood some people’s orders and when they asked for a omelet with only chicken and cheese, they were brought a plate with a chicken breast and melted cheese on top; the communication/language barrier can be comical at times.

We boarded the bus and drove 20 minutes to the Stobi Archaeological Site. An ancient Roman City initially built in the 2nd century BC under the reign of the Macedonian king Phillip V. We got a special tour of the whole site and saw everything from the jaw dropping coliseum, the church, the bathhouse and some other social and family dwellings. It was incredible to be within this ancient city, you see stuff like his on TV or magazines, but we actually walked through the same corridors and on the same stone as people thousands of years ago! We finished up the tour with the honor of being able to go into what was left of the coliseum and took some cool photos and videos: and yes Planking was involved.

(Quick heads up—keep an eye out for the official Planking Without Borders photo album coming soon…)

After our surreal trip around Stobi, we took a 20-minute drive into Skopje and headed to the residence of Philip T. Reeker, the United State Ambassador for a BBQ and swimming. On the way though… it was proven that Macedonia has the craziest drivers of anywhere I have every seen! Never have I seen such a blunt disrespect of road rules and driving courtesy… passing and a lack for any stop light or yielding.. haha it was intense. But once we got his house, never in my life has a pool looked so refreshing or felt so good. It was like jumping into a cool wet heaven and every muscle in my body relaxed and was immediately relaxed… oooh man it was nice. The food was American and boy was it good!! Burgers, grilled chicken and a variety of classic BBQ sides such as Potato salad, and sliced tomatoes with onions. Everyone had a great time swimming, eating, and mingling with other Americans who were there ( from the Embassy and a few marines). There was also a puppy who someone brought who was saved off the streets in Macedonia; it was only 5 weeks old and sooo cute!! There are a lot of stray dogs here and we even saw a stray horse! No joke! It was chillin under an over pass eating some dead grass… nothing holding him there or any type of identification or sign of ownership…. Hahaha they got stray/wild horses out here!

But the Ambassadors house was a much-appreciated break from the last week. Once we got back to the hotel, everyone gathered in the lobby area of our floor we did the Deck of Card workout. You draw a card and do however many push ups the card is, face cards are 10 and Aces are 11, then after you do that many push ups you rest for the same interval in seconds. So if you draw an “8” you do 8 push ups then rest for 8 seconds then draw another card. It is a total of 260 push-ups in a short amount of time, and very challenging. But we had some music playing and each other to push through it. Some people could not make it through, when that happens you do a body bridge instead of the push-ups, that way you are still doing work. It was pretty tiring, but we weren’t done yet! Jen led us through the ab workout they do in gymnastics… and you know gymnasts have STRONG cores, that was harder than the push-ups! Haha but after it all it felt good to get in a work out and do so with my fellow Beaver athletes. We even practiced dong wall hand stands for a bit, and let me tell you… Me upside down against a wall is quite a feat! haha

After everyone got cleaned up Roberto, Jen, MC, Kristen and myself played a game Roberto made up, called Berto Ball, and it is the lamest game you have heard of, but we had a great time and are going to play it again this week. You pretty much sit on the edge of the bed and one person lays on the floor tosses a small soft ball up and uses their hand as a bat and hits it off the wall and tries to hit or “tag” someone one the edge of the bed.. but the people on the bed cannot move. Lol yeah we were kinda bored haha but it was all fun. Post Berto ball, I went to my room, looked at some new YouTube videos and blogged a little bit, organized some photos, and spent some well enjoyed time on Skype. After a long day of events and driving my small dorm sized bed felt great.

-Kevin

#NP Hillbilly Deluxe- Brooks & Dunn

Yeah- I love country music and its feelin like country time:)