The Plan for Japan
Crazy, isn’t it? It’s 2 and a half years away. Well, 28 months and 15 days to be exact. But who is counting?
I had this crazy idea, many moons ago, about going to a World Cup. A rugby one. I went, it was great, and I put the idea to bed. Tick.
Four years later, it happened again. And now it keeps happening.
Except now is different. Now I’m a little bit obsessed.
Japan will be number 5. Australia, France, NZ and England so far.
As a little background to me: I grew up in a football family, took to rugby late (mostly due to a boss who was a director at Wasps and heavily involved with the RFU) and the trip to Australia was a “screw this, I hate work, I need a month-off” sort of thing. Since then though, I’ve grown into the game more and more.
Having travelled far for the other RWCs (I wasn’t living in England during the French RWC, too easy!), I went all out during the 2015 edition. I went to 18 matches in the end, visited all but one venue (missed Wembley) and saw 17 of 20 teams play (missed Ireland, Italy and Canada). I even attended my first final.
That took some planning – early morning coaches, stupid train connections and matches in Exeter and Newcastle only a day apart requiring a flight!
Some would be put off, but I’m more hooked in than ever.
I’m already ready for the next. Are you ready, George?
Thumbs up. Let’s go. (The other bloke is me, by the way).
The cool rugby fan persona in me is tragically offset by the accountant. Thankfully, the accountant has the spreadsheet setup and ready to go, while the excitable rugby fan can’t wait for the draw.
Just to prove how sad (and serious and excited) I am, here’s a sample of my spreadsheet:
OC, BTW, stands for Opening Ceremony. Yup, I’m a loser!
It’s all a bit premature, of course – even with the draw next week, tickets won’t go on sale for at least 6 more months, flights won’t be available until at least September 2018 (if not later!) and hotels will jack their prices up at a sniff of a game nearby and will hold back rooms deliberately. Budgeting has occurred in the Redman household, but that will change once the fixtures come out!
It doesn’t matter. The accountant wants to plan. The rugby fan just wants the draw to hurry up so he can get EXCITED!
Through the next 2 and a bit years, my aim here is to show what goes into planning a trip which could be 2 weeks long, could be 4 weeks (boss depending) or could even be 6 weeks (wife and boss depending)!
I’ll also continue on during the trip, of course, with match reports and such things as where to buy the cheapest beer in Tokyo (I already know that, but I’m not sharing yet so you’ll have to keep reading!).
If there is anything you’d like to know, let me know. If anyone wants to join me, let me know. If anyone wants to meet up over a beer and swap ideas for travelling, let me know.
In the meantime, did I mention I’m excited for the draw?
Peter (@RedmanPe on Twitter) will be bringing us regular updates on the Journey to Japan, give him a follow and remember to keep an eye out for his experience right here on the #rugbyunited blog!