Friday, May 22, 2009
Running on the Wall
Anyhow, last wkend was fun. i went to my friend's band's concert, then hung out bkstage w/ her bandmates and some other musicians, then went out to a bbq meat joint with the drummer and keyboard player and got pretty drunk.
Then i had to split to catch the 3:30am bus out to the great wall. attempted a nap on the 2.5 hr ride to the wall. i had to argue my way into the site 'cause i had no confirmation or race # or anything, but finally got all my stuff.
Then me and about 1500 other other people (about 95% expats, but it was pretty expensive, and so i understand, Chinese folk just aren't so much into running anyhow) all ran out to the wall.
The course was really really cool. It offered 1000 stairs to climb up, treacherous descents not suitable to running at any speed, sections of wall wide enough to accommodate only one runner at a time (which caused big traffic jams, forcing people to socialize or organize things like... The Wave. Ha.). It offered plenty of beautiful vistas, but also toured through the local village, through old hutongs, and farmer fields.
Before the run, i was all gungho about doing my slowest race to date, having trained sporadically, and not being interested in limping for a few days afterwards this time.
And after climbing a few stairs i realized just how great of an idea walking was.
Also, it was nice to take time to take some pictures. Especially in the village where the local folk were watching the race. And then i realized that this provided a welcome reversal to the usual voyeur-subject relationship between travelers and locals. So it was really natural to take pictures of the locals, and they were all accommodating.
The last time i did a 1/2 marathon i did it in under 2 hrs. This one took over 3. But i felt i gave it a good go, and didn't suffer any muscular aftermath.
Oh. i should also mention i was sorely disappointed by the crappy Subway lunch at the end. And how epically unfair that the veg subs were 1/2 size, and everyone else gets full size. Ooh, i oughta write someone a letter.