“To feel the love of people whom we love is a fire that feeds our life. But to feel the affection that comes from those whom we do not know, from those unknown to us, who are watching over our sleep and solitude, over our dangers and our weaknesses, that is something still greater and more beautiful because it widens out the boundaries of our being, and unites all living things.”
Neruda’s quote perfectly encapsulates our experience in Croatia over the weekend.Â The trip couldn’t have been a more special way to celebrate a birthday and Steve’s first vacation in 8 years because we shared it with Bear Bear, Surya, Coach CI, and more friends from Finland (Kukka), Denmark (Thierry), Germany (Joaquim), and of course all of the awesome lifters from Slovenia and Croatia.
The event was the WKC’s first European Long Cycle invitational at the underground Core Gym (a creative combination of MMA, strongman, KB Sport, Paintball, S&C, and general fitness) in Zagreb, one of the most fascinating and beautiful cities in the world.Â Despite being on foreign soil, our hosts (Gregor Sobocan and Bruno Mandic) made us feel right at home by gathering their closest friends to help welcome the lifters from various countries.
It almost felt like a family reunion and we were somehow their long lost relatives.Â Imagine a fierce highly experienced Croatian boxer and coach (the most kindhearted Neno) alongside his equally impressive fiance (the even sweeter Ivana), magnanimously offering you their love and rich history of their hometown.Â Thanks to them, we were taken to the city’s most revered 12th century cathedrals — among other amazing historic landmarks — and then to their favorite local restaurants and pubs.Â Words can’t express the generosity of these wonderful people.
We had an unforgettable adventure with all of the participants on and off the platform in Croatia!
Overview of ZagrebaÄka Katedrala
Bear at the Center’s flower market
Oh, the food…
Surya enjoying some shopping and exploring in Zagreb on her first trip to Europe.
12th century doors
A wow moment for Steve
It is my hope that everyone back home at the IC spent quality time with family and friends as well during the holiday weekend.Â In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we thank each one of you for being a part of our community.Â You are the reason the IC continues to be a special home away from home for everyone here.Â We also would like to express our enormous appreciation for Jessica, Danielle, Nicki, and Johnny for taking care of life at the IC in our absence… and let’s face it, for being hard working rock stars all year long!
With deep gratitude,