In January, I travelled to Croatia as editor for the official Men’s EHF EURO 2018 website, working with an amazing, fun team that made this tournament a very special one. First, we were in Split for a little less than a week, before spending almost two in Zagreb. It was my third visit to Croatia, and once again I found myself dreaming of what it would be like to live there — I even began to look at visa options, so the seed is well and truly planted for this to be my possible future home. Let’s see.
In Split, with my post-Australia jetlag waking me up before daylight, I was often making my way along the coast for my morning run just as the sun rose, when the city was coming to life. In Zagreb, the buildings and parks never fail to impress me. I love the cafe culture in Croatia, and ducking out for a quick coffee to escape what we were being served in the press centre was a small but very important pleasure during the long tournament.
On January 29, I returned to Amsterdam as the busy winter tournament period came to an end. Beginning at the end of November last year, I had been on the road for two months solid, first with the Women’s Handball World Championship, then a visit to Australia for Christmas, and finally, the Men’s EHF EURO 2018.
The Women’s World Championship took place in Germany, where I was based in Leipzig, then Hamburg for the final weekend. As it was December, Leipzig’s Christmas Markets were in full swing, and they added a lot to the cosy atmosphere in the city centre where we stayed.
Autumn may signal the approach of the gloomy winter period, but it is also one of my favourite times of year as someone who grew up in a place where the seasons range from hot to less hot. I am never not enchanted by the colourful leaves, hazy light and crisp air, and Amsterdam seems to be especially beautiful this year.
The 2017 summer of handball tournaments began in Algiers, Algeria in July. The concentration of competitions taking place over the summer has meant a busy couple of months for me from July to September since 2015, when I covered my first Men’s Junior World Championship, followed by the Youth World Championship. This year the Junior World Championship was held in Algiers, after which I travelled to Tbilisi, Georgia for the Men’s Youth World Championship.
In Algiers we stayed in a hotel with an incredible view across the city, overlooking a concert venue which treated me to live music many nights after I had finished coverage for the day. One hot, sunny morning was spent exploring parts of the city on a guided tour, where we visited the Kasbah and the Matyr’s Memorial. The Memorial du Martyr Mujahid Museum was a sad, but interesting and clear highlight of the day and visit to Algiers overall.