In my mind I’ve lived a very charmed life so far, a life that I’m incredibly grateful for, don’t get me wrong I’ve worked incredibly hard (in my opinion anyway!!) but I love working hard so I certainly haven’t got any complaints! I also don’t like to have complaints or regrets but when I do look back I sometimes think I didn’t really appreciate some of the experiences I was blessed enough to have quite as much as I should.
And the experiences I talk about here are mostly about travel, in my previous life as a professional football player I was lucky enough to travel the world , experiencing different places and cultures, usually travelling first class and staying in 5* hotels. And do you know what I spent most of my time doing? No? Okay I’ll tell you, I spent most of my time moaning! And it wasn’t just me, it was more or less all of us, it was too hot, the beds weren’t comfy, the food’s no good, I wish I was at home! Crazy right? Here we were getting treated so well experiencing incredible things and all I wanted to do was go home!
Now don’t get me wrong I still have some great memories of the trips I went on, while playing for Manchester United I went on two pre-season tours, one to Bangkok, Malaysia, and Singapore and one to the USA where we visited New York, Chicago, and Philadelphia. I know right, not a bad way to make a living but although having some good memories like sipping singapore slings with the likes of David Beckham and Ryan Giggs at the Raffles hotel in Singapore and coming on as substitute against Celtic at a sold out Giants stadium in New York, I still didn’t make the most out of such amazing trips, too busy waiting to go home!
These days I’m very different, I love to travel and try to make the most out of every trip I go on and experience the culture with an open mind. I get excited for trips away and love having them in the diary to have something to really look forward to! Nowadays that’s mainly holidays with the family and not exoctic pre season trips although I was lucky enough to get on a trip to Dubai with a Man Utd legends team to take part in a charity game (I think the word legend was used very loosely, in my case anyway!) and I’ve also had a couple of trips away with the Football Fun Factory and I’m really excited that they may well become more frequent!
The early trips haven’t been that exoctic, we travelled up to Burnley to deliver a coaches event with former Manchester United assistant manager Mike Phelan, we went to the Isle of Wight to support our first ‘overseas’ launch and we went over to Ireland to do some training with Center Parcs staff over in Longford! And they were all great and we had a lovely time. It has also really whet our appetite to spread the FFF far and wide! And we’ve got a couple of trips in the diary, one which I’m sworn to secrecy about and one to Spain for a team building adventure! I never thought after playing football that I would travel overseas for work, but it certainly looks like my most exciting trips are ahead of me. And rest assured I will appreciate every single one!