So where was I? Oh, right, Braaschaat.
All in all the meet at Braaschaat turned out to be pretty decent. Two of my OTC teammates ran really well in the 3,000m: Bolota Asmerom (7:48) and Ryan Bak (7:50). The grounds where the track was located were incredible. The track itself was nestled in the woods, blocked on all sides by huge trees. This created an almost fairytale atmosphere as well as windless conditions. On top of that there was a really great trail system just outside of the entrance gate to the stadium. This was a huge relief to me since I have had to do some of my warm-ups looping small grass fields. That does not do good things for me mentally before a race. I prefer to get away from the hustle bustle of the meet and just focus on my race. Anyways, the less than cool parts of the meet were that when the big pile-up happened in the 1,500m, John Jefferson got thrown to the inside of the track and consequently ended up dropping out. Not good since he was really hoping to dip under 3:39. The other negative aspect of the meet was that all of the events were so late. This resulted in us not getting back to the dorms until almost 1:00 am. Pretty standard for all of the meets thus far, except I had to wake up at 7:00 am the next morning to catch the train to the Brussels airport. And I hadn't packed yet.
I finally got to sleep around 2:30 am or so after packing and winding down a bit, when my alarm went off I nearly cried. I was SO tired. But once I got moving and splashed some water on my face I was pretty ready to go.
The group of us travelling to Dublin rendez-vous-ed in the central courtyard of the dorms at 7:30 and biked to the train station. Let's just say biking at 7:30 carrying a bit of luggage is not such a good idea. I almost crashed three times and was about three feet from being broadsided by a Fiat.
The travel to Dublin was relatively painless, other than being exhausted, and I was looking forward to spending a couple of days outside of Belgium.