Monday, 7 November 2011

Dear Friends

I have been incredibly lucky in my time here to meet and befriend some pretty amazing people, I have a beautiful girlfriend who I love to the end of the earth, some friends I know I can trust and console in at any time of day and night, friends that I know will be down for shredding at the drop of a hat, or up for an adventure, or a 14 hour drive across states to a race.

A very special friend is a man called Nik Sokol. He is perhaps the most kind-hearted, good spirited, strong, knowledgeable and infectiously funny human beings I have ever met. Yesterday, I was lucky enough to get a call from Nik who was in the neighborhood with his 2 beautiful boys, Suriyan and Tarin. I went out to meet them all and caught up before we went up to the roof and hung out, catching a beautiful sunset over the Manhattan skyline and playing a quick game of tag.

Tarin is almost a year old now, and has been through so much more than most kids his age. He was born with Down syndrome, and had many health issues that had him in Intensive Care Units for almost half of his life. Some of these units were so sterile, it meant Nik and his beautiful wife, Aruna, were without opportunity to touch or hold Tarin. I'm not a parent, so I can only imagine how difficult that must have been for them both, but their positivity and strength, was so incredibly inspiring. The enormous amount of love for this beautiful baby boy, and his own incredible strength and perseverance pulled him through.

I know very little about Down syndrome, and I suppose many of us are the same, Nik shared this website recently, and it offers a brief insight into Down syndrome. Take a moment and have a read. Awareness amongst more of us is a positive step.

I feel so lucky to have someone like Nik to call a friend, and seeing him and the boys yesterday gave me a huge lift, the love and positivity is so infectious. I'd take a bullet for him. One day, I hope I will sit back and read his autobiography.

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