Jim Greenwood learned from living in his car that his true home was back on a rugby pitch.
After his business went bust, Greenwood, the new Gordonians head coach, opted to live in his car for up to eight months. He did not want the hassle of having to rent a flat.
But while it suited his circumstances and he is keen to point out he was perfectly happy, there came a point when he had to get back doing what he feels he does best.
He said: “I started my own business and it went really well. I over-extended myself and ended up going bankrupt shortly after Donald Trump was voted in and Brexit happened. I didn’t quite know how to react after I lost that business.
“I spent seven or eight months living in my car, while putting up marquees, driving diggers, volunteer coaching in my spare time. But basically just getting my head round everything.
“During that time I did my level three (qualification) which is an 18-month course. That really does mould you from a player into a coach and give you the skills to mould a rugby programme.
“I’m a big believer in taking the positive out of every situation. The seven or eight months I spent in my car, while it sounds bad, I had everything I needed. I was working three jobs and was perfectly happy.
“I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone and it was good fun for a while. It got me out of a bind. But I had to look at it positively – ‘thank God I’ve got a car, thank God I’ve got a job’.
“It could have been much worse.”
After completing his qualifications, Greenwood, originally from the New Forest in Hampshire, applied for a coaching job at Robert Gordon’s College and started in March 2019. A chance meeting with Gordonians director of rugby Bevis Reid at the gym lured him into joining the club.
Greenwood added: “Bevis coaxed me into coming down for a session and I quickly realised they all looked like I did when I was a semi-professional in my early-20s.
“I sort of came out of retirement and enjoyed it but I’m definitely not the future of Gordonians!
“I’m excited to work on my coaching now.
“I’ve coached for about 15 or 16 years, a multitude of age groups and women’s rugby on the south coast.
“I’ve done some performance stuff with the SRU up here as well.
“It makes perfect sense in terms of continuity. I coach the senior team at Gordon’s so that makes for a seamless transition for lads who are leaving the college who want to continue playing rugby in Aberdeen.
“It’s an opportunity for me to run my own coaching team and put my own stamp on the brand of rugby we want to play. The players have got aspirations to play an exciting, free-thinking brand of rugby.
“I’ve had a phone call with every player in the squad; they want to develop this brand of rugby that allows them to attack anywhere on the pitch and have no fear about repercussions.
“With the average age of the squad, if we can keep them together and develop them as experts in their positions, you’re going to have a real force to be reckoned with.”