I walked through the door of the Sushi Koma restaurant and met with my old boxing coach Chris Ben-Tchavtchavadze. He said something to me that made me crack a smile. "What's up Bermudez, you look exactly the same!"

The next day, I walked through the Fight Captial gym door and heard that familiar boisterous greeting from my old boxing coach, Skipper Kelp. "BERMUDEZ!!!"

I looked at both men and saw they have not changed a bit. They were both still amazingly fit, sporting a friendly and welcoming smile. All the qualties both of them had in the UNLV boxing gym years ago. To say a visit was long overdue is an understatement.

I had extensive conversations with these two men. We talked about family, business, politics, books, our goals, dreams, and life in general. I also provided them a testimony on how much they have changed this 36 year old man's life. In fact, boxing was something we barely even brought up. As we continued to talk, I felt like I was trying to cram almost fifteen years worth of life in an hour long conversation. I swear I could have talked to these men for hours on end if we had more time.

On my way back to my hotel, I was reflecting as I looked onto the Las Vegas strip. I looked at how much has changed in fourteen years. I saw new buildings, shops, restaurants, and shows. I even saw how different my alma mater looked. It then occurred to me how much time has passed. And how fast it has flown by.

Sure, I follow these gentlemen on social media. I have kept up with their Boxing/MMA endeavors. I have seen the pictures and videos of family and friends, cool fishing trips, and vacation spots. I have commented on posts and recieved the occasional like and reply. I have even chatted with both of them a bit throughout the years. But following their lives looking at a tablet or a cell phone does not replace seeing these men in front of me. It does not replace meaningful conversations. It does not replace giving one another a handshake and a hug.

It so awesome visiting Chris & Skip. But I must admit, I had an unexpected flood emotions come over me. It was a reminder that time waits for no one. You need to make a conscious effort to see and visit the people that truly matter. Before you know it, years have flown by without even realizing it. Just like Ferris Buller said, "LIfe moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." How true that is.

Thank you so much for hanging out with me fellas. I am extremely proud of you two. Next time I will remember to get a picture with you Chris. This time, I promise it won't be over a decade until the next time I see you.

Always your friend & boxing protégé


#UNLVBoxing #BoxingWriter #FisticuffsBoxing #Boxing

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