Wow. Long time no post. But LOTS has been going on. I'll start posting it, bit by bit, as I find time. Still playing catch up with work and school now that we're back. We were away almost all of October! The cats still recognise us, so that's good.
Ok, first of all, The Duchess came to town! She stayed in Vancouver a couple days with us then went over to Victoria to meet up with Dora, Marko Polo, and others. Rocco, Steve and I followed the next day. It was round 3, you see. Third year in a row for me to run the Royal Victoria Half Marathon. And this year I was going to kick its ass. This year, many people were going to do a lot of kicking.
The weekend was pretty rainy and the race morning forecast was not good: Heavy rains promised for the entire day. But, it seems my friend N's luck of never racing in bad weather rubbed off on me, or it was the confluence of great people all in one town for the weekend creating good energy. Whatever the vector, race morning dawned quite dry and even a little sunny. Two of our party ran the 8km and I ran the half, all in a surprising window of nice weather! Not that you can tell from the darkness of our pre-race photo:
But, a few minutes later as the races began, the sky was lightening, offering enough light for Dora and Rocco to perform the necessary crotch check just before the starting gun went off.
The gun went off and the race began! Look how excited these two are!
And for good reason. Dora ran a 47 minute 8km, a personal best, and Rocco ran the course in 51 minutes 15 seconds (he'd like me to point out that his time is palindromic) on an injured hamstring. Rocco had been training for this race for two months and injured his hamstring two weeks before it. Being his FIRST EVER race, and receiving a good race number, he was convinced to run it anyway. Both Dora and Rocco are very happy with their results, as they damn well should be! Yay!
I also had a great race in the window of good weather. I was aiming to run it under 2 hours, with a secret - unspoken - goal of coming in between 1:50 and 1:55. Good training, good weather, great support, and my fast laces helped me run the course in 1:48. I'm so, so satisfied and pleased! It was also great for the spectators that the rain held off as they hustled between different viewpoints along both the 8km and the half-marathon courses all morning.
After a bit of R&R, and a post-race massage generously donated by The Duchess (oh baby!), we went for turkey dinner at a good friend's house with everyone, I think 16 or 17 people, in town for race weekend/Thanksgiving. Good food, good times, good wine. Later on, Rocco, The Duchess and I went on to a fantastic concert by a Winnipeg band, The Weakerthans in downtown Victoria. Holy crap, by the end of the night I was more ready for bed than I have ever been. I wish I had some pictures of more of the gang because there really were lots of fun folks in town including two cute little noodles (at the time) still under the age of 1. I guess the cameras were worn out from covering the races.
A little more socialising and museum-visiting the next day and finally we caught the ferry back to Vancouver. The Duchess kept us company for a couple more days before heading back up north. One day later, we headed south, but that's another, longer story. To be continued...