Well, damn. I’ve spent the past two days hopping from one dragging hook-up possibility to another, across the Burren and into Galway, only to find that the West of Ireland, as one NYC ex-patriot calls it, is the fly on the butt of European Internet connectivity. Oh, sure, there are Internet cafes galore. About one every twelve paces, but none of them able or willing to give a girl with a laptop a connection. If I had a wireless card, maybe I could hog someone else’s space here in the city. But without one, I’m in a limping state, needing to write to you under the fire of a timeclock in a cafe, far from my friendly and familiar laptop. This is not ever my most effective or creative situation. Any game with an hourglass is not my friend.
So, I will do my best to keep up my daily missives, friends. But the links may not always be what I want them to be. And for the next month, do expect the occaisional outtage. I’ll keep writing and posting, but these posts may double up on you oddly now and then.
Now then. Though the net connectivity may be just a half decade behind on this side of the island, rudely enforcing a more humane existance, this place is flowing with beauty and kindness. And wind and cold. Everyone I’ve met assures me it was warm last week. Shorts! they say with an exclamation so profound I’m sure I won’t be wearing the ones I packed any time soon. I checked the weather before I left. They make distinctions here between Rain, Light Rain, Scattered Showers, and Intermittent Rain. I’m not sure how to distinguish these, but I am sure that all of these, along with Hail, come at west Ireland on a cycling rhythm every 15 minutes or so. Every fourth revolution of weather brings a warm patch of sun. All forms of weather are accompanied by wind.
I’m determined to make that Dublin Women’s Mini-Marathon on June 2. For a bit there, I thought I’d drop the subject, but since jogging the last 2 miles with my niece, Elizabeth, at the Pittsburgh Marathon May 3, I’m more encouraged and determined than ever. I’ve been working with an online coach, slowly gaining endurance by working on intermittent short intervals and long. (It’s short intervals of hard work with recovery that most quickly build aerobic capacity, I’m told. It must work. When I began I couldn’t quite run a mile, and now I can complete 3 very slow ones.) I’ve worked through knee and ankle pain, averting hip and heel pain through careful training to get this far. I’m hoping June 2 won’t destroy me. But right now I’m aware that the difference between 3 miles and 6.1 (10K) is huge.
It’ll be quite a thing for this former 252-lb. chica to cross that line, almost regardless of time or whether I end up walking the last bit. I’m hoping not to.
So I went jogging this morning. Following a winding road, redundantly paved over the Burren’s rock base, along the wild north Atlantic shore, where brambles flop over ancient stone walls, and the cows are startled to see you in your dayglo orange parka. At least I think they were startled. They stopped chewing for a second. Is that what cows look like when they’re startled? It was early, cold, sunny, beautiful, lonely, and the wind did all my breathing for me, the sea air running straight up my nose, not even asking my lungs for permission.
The run back was better.
Has anyone out there worked out an equation for how many extra miles’ credit you ought to get when running through wind gusts of what speeds? If so, please send it on.
Okay, I can see by my clock that I’m running out of time.
Except to say, it’s a very helpful thing to have a clear goal in mind. My clear goal for this month is to be able to jog for 72 straight minutes, very slowly. I expect that’s about what it’ll take for me to cross that finish line. A 12-minute-mile pace. Almost a walk, but not quite.
Is there a walk, a swim, a ride, a run out there with your name on it? In a place you’ve always wanted to see, for a cause that matters to you? Could you do it with a friend? Training for a date like this really helps you get your feet on the floor in the morning. To prepare. Consider it.
Ooops. I just realized I can’t update the archives indices either. Rats. Grr. Horror.
(Somebody FedEx me an attitude wrench, please.)
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