I have been first experienced Festive500 challenge in the year of 2016. It was not easy. It was only some years before when I started cycling and the weather was not favorable either but these were not the reasons why getting on wheels were a burden at that times.
When it came to 24th December 2016 and I started the challenge I could hardly be in a worse shape. It has been a tough year. I had mourning feelings because of my Dad, our home has been robbed and I kept on scrolling all these heavy feelings. By the end of the year and the 500 kms I was out of myself, completely locked in. So Festive500 of 2016 was rather an escape from myself, my family and the world than excitement, joy or challenge. Naturally I have recognised all these long after the race.
I became 40 when I settled with a family. I am turning to 47. In 2012 we got married with Kata and in 2013 our daughter Anna has been born. I have never ever wanted a family, I used to have no desire or ambition like this. I had a torn family, most of us were suffering from addiction like me running after my destiny. At the age of 29 with kind help I could give it up and has developed a better new life than ever thought about. I have covered everything; love, travelling, friendship, work, existency, succes. I have never dreamed about having them rather to die before the age of 30.
In 2009 I met Kata a girl from whom I received full acceptance, respect and understanding for the first time in my life and to whom I could requite all these. When we got married and decided to have a child the thought of having a family was still distant but being secure in our relationship gained over me. Together we figured out whatever could come we would try our best to face and solve it.
Our daughter, Anna has been born in October 2013 who was a great decision, she is happy and contented giving us much love.
Probably to maintain a relationship is much more difficult than to establish one. It is trite but it is true in my life. As I have mentioned by the end of 2016 I was locked in myself, felt distant and not caring enough for my family. I could find many reasons, my Dad died and there were other things happening in that year. By the time I finished the 500 kms during Christmas season we were way too distant with my wife a large gap was between us. My only self-obsessed aim was to win that Moots bike. I am happy now it didn’t happen, Ruth has a wonderful story she deserves it.
After New Year’s Eve we both decided either we divorce or there should be drastical changes in our relationship. I was wondering to escape and move away but I couldn’t imagine my life without Anna and Kata. We started couple therapy instead. I didn’t believe it but finally it helped a lot. I haven’t become nicer, smarter or better but slowly and unperceivable revaluation has happened inside me. We got closer again and found the intimacy that hadn’t been ours for a while yet it was there at the beginning.
In the meantime in 2017 cycling has become a part of me, another carbon bicycle came by after my former steel vintage one. I grew stronger, progressed more and more and ascendants are getting easier to fight with. When it came to Festive500 a bad feeling like anxiety occured since it was connected to one of my worst periods of life but also some positive glimpsed out of it that I had done it. I was sure not to enter the competition again I really didn’t want to experience the same again. Only until I read the terms of it in December. A Leica camera is the reward. As if it was for me since nearly two years ago my beloved Leica has been stolen from home. The burglar did not only take my camera but also my creativity my hobby I was almost perished in vain. So when I read the terms I felt that I needed to enter the race since both of my most important and loved hobbies were in there at the same time; cycling and Leica.
Finally I asked my wife how was our year together. A lot better - Kata replied. My answer was that Festive500 has put a period to our suffering and made us move to therapy and change. There was no doubt about it. So I started off again. The powers above helped with spring-like weather, which was extreme according to Hungary in December, that let me finish in four days. Being on the road and cutting down the kilometers was an astonishing experience how I have been a different man than last year. I felt a lot more positive, more open-minded, more joyful and more easy with myself and with others and with the world.
These were my experiences with Festive500 2016 and 2017 so I owe you for them. Thank you.
For half a year I have another Leica camera so I dare to show some favourite pics in the video about my family: https://vimeo.com/250018713
Best regards, Feri from Hungary
Addresse: Pecs, Buza ter 8., 7626-Hungary