Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The wrong result, relegation and rifts

I'm sure most of you had a fine bank holiday weekend, enjoying the early summer sun as it bathed the countryside in its glorious, unexpected rays of warmth. And if that was the case then good on you; I hope you managed to get outside with the family and burn yourself to a cinder. Because only then would you begin to empathise with me, although the resulting physical discomfort will have been as nothing to the emotional torture that a couple of members of the StrollOn team and I suffered come 3 pm on Sunday.

This was the moment that Stephen Fry's and my beloved Norwich City were relegated to the depths of the third tier of English football for the first time in 50 years. This is the footballing equivalent of being sent to the "naughty step" at nursery school. As I'm sure you'll recall from your days spent "in Coventry" it's damaging and very difficult to bounce back from.  

As a Canaries supporter I have now suffered two relegations in the past 4 years. My pride has been hurt, especially after having put so much time, money and love into supporting the boys in yellow and green since the days of my youth. Perhaps this hurt was more visible than I thought. Few of the friends staying with me over this distastrous weekend sought to pour salt into these newly opened wounds. Perhaps they feared that if taunted I might, like a wounded buffalo, react in an unpredictable and aggressive manner. Perhaps they were concerned that the reaction might not happen immediately, but that vengeance would be sought over time, at a time that suited me. And they would have been right, because I was an angry, angry little man.

Some time ago I managed to have a chat with the current CEO of the club on the phone after leaving a rather pointed post on the club's unofficial website, the Pink'Un. What I said to the man overseeing the club's gentle but inexorable decline was that I did not think that he was the right man for the job. Since 2004 he had made mistake after mistake. I, like so many others, no longer had faith in either him or the rest of the board. It was time for a change.

And not a change in players, manager or coaching staff and this has been done to death - the death of the club. Instead we now need to look at those in a position to appoint new managers and coaches and vet the sales and purchases of new players. Whilst we cannot change the whole board, we can make changes within it; electing a new CEO would, in my opinion, be a good start.

In the meantime, the team and I are going to continue thinking about other things, unrelated to Norwich City Football Club. The Summer Holidays are approaching when football clubs and supporters alike have time off to relax for a few weeks, recharging the batteries before a new season begins. And what recharging needs to be done. Come mid-June we'll know more about midwinter trips to Yeovil, Carlisle and Exeter. Since StrollOn's focus has become increasingly UK based to help service all those planning "staycations" this year, this might be a good chance to research first hand some of our lesser known regional centres. 

If you live in a regional centre which, you feel, has a lot to offer the discerning visitor then please do get in touch. We're always on the look out for new subject matter to cover in our next line of mp3 audio guides. Just send us an email and we'll be in touch.

Until then, StrollOn.com...


A World of Audio guides, Walks and iPods

About StrollOn

Hello and welcome to StrollOn, where we produce audio guides and audio tours of London, Paris and an ever-expanding list of major european cities. We have also developed our free city overviews and "Hot spots" (individual audio commentaries for individual sights and attractions). Whichever product interests you we simply ask that you select the relevant audio guide or audio tour on our website and download the mp3 files onto your iPod or other mp3 player, thereby turning your iPod into your "GuidePod".

As you will see from the this blog, we are a new company, providing recently developed products on our website. We've set up this blog so that we can tell you all about us as you join us from our infancy. And we are actively looking for feedback, both on the website and the blog. We don't want you to help us simply to become the biggest, but we do want you to help us become the best walking audio tours company.