Special farewell party for Yousef
Dundalk After Dark
On Friday night I headed for a very special going away party which was held for Yousef Alluhaydan originally from Saudi Arabia but living in Ravensdale, who was returning to the Middle East after living and studying here for the past five years.
Yousef has successfully been studying Mechanical Engineering in DkIT, but it was his association with the North East Runners ever since he arrived that brought him to Byrnes bar as his fellow athletes bid him a fond farewell.
I wasn't too long in the door when I had the pleasure of talking to Yousef who told me that he trains 5 days a week and just loves the weather here, yes you read that right, loves it. He said that back home if can be 50 degrees and he particularly running in the winter here!
I then decided to see who was there to wish him a fond farewell and met up with Chris and Eamonn Kelly from Kilkerley and Aidan Duffy from Ballybarrack who told me Yousef will be sadly missed, he's a great character and great to train with and all wanted to wish him the best of luck for the future.
Next I got talking to Anne Duffy from Glenwood who was with daughter Annmarie and boyfriend Rory Mulholland from Carlinn Hall who all run with the club and were always delighted to see Yousef, although Rory has been injured for some time and now that their friend is leaving, he's hoping to make a more than long awaited comeback.
I then headed over for a chat with Jim Gonnelly from Belfry Avenue who was with wife Julie and he told me Yousef was always happy and a great addition to the club, always taking selfies with everyone and hopes that he has plenty of great memories to take back home with him.
Not too far away I met up with Cathy Byrne from Meadow Grove and Sabrina Mulholland from Greenacres who both told me he is a nice friendly chap who is always in good form, is the selfie king and will certainly be missed by the entire club.
After this I got talking to Gareth McKevitt from Killin and Ciaran Murray from Dunmahon who said he is the nicest guy you could ever meet and they were there to give him the send off he deserved.
Flicking through his photo album when I met them were Karen Murphy from Channonrock and Edele Johnston from Bay Estate who were always delighted to run with him and were definitely going to give him a major send off.
Not too long later I caught up with Cliodhna Daly from Haggardstown and Annmarie Duffy Niamh Fergus both from Carlinn Hall who will definitely miss Yousef and his selfies and wanted to wish him all the best for the future.
After this I met Declan Toal from Priorland Gardens who had coached Yousef while he was here and assured me he will definitely be a serious runner when he gets back to Saudi Arabia.
Not too far away I got a word with Paul Hyland from Haggardstown and Niall Fergus from Carlinn Hall who said Yousef is mad, he'd have no problem running a 20km in the middle of the night!
I then got a word with Mickey Clarke from Creggan who told me Yousef will definitely missed because he is the heart of the club.
Beside him I got talking to Laura Mathews from Point Road and Julie Gonnelly from Belfry Gardens who described him as a charming man with an infectious personality and would definitely be missed around the club, but that was why they were there to give him the send off he truly deserved.