He sounded tired and glum and the Peanut and I wished him good luck. As he was walking to the registration tent, the Peanut and I jumped out and surprised him. The smile on his face was priceless. He was visibly happy to see us there.
The Peanut loves to play in Van's truck
Vans did very well in his race. It was the first time all season he has beaten his friend (who is in an different age bracket) and he told the Peanut she was his good luck charm.
Father Daughter Team
Vans & his friend Sarcasm
It was a long night for the Peanut and I. After leaving Vans and Sarcasm we headed home, showered and were in bed. Luckily the Peanut fell asleep quickly whereas I was wide awake all night long. I am already negative hours in my sleep lately due to the Peanut's recent night wakings. Now she was finally sleeping and here I was wide eyed. Ugh.
5:30 am came all too quickly. My alarm went off and I literally rolled out of bed and got ready to meet Pigeon at Cavitt Stallman for our scheduled run. I knew instantly something was not right. My legs just felt dead and my body felt like I was close to being on empty. I figured it was just some sleep deprivation and grogginess.
I quickly put on my pre-poison oak treatment and then crawled into a ball in the back of my truck waiting for Pigeon to arrive. I was freezing to boot. Pigeon arrived not much later and took her time getting out of her car. Little did I know, her back was still bothering her and she was easing herself out of her seat.
We greeted each other and both basically shrugged off our aches and pains as "no big deal" and started our run. Two pig headed, stubborn trail runners at best.
When we hit the single tracks and rounded a corner, the Pigeon let out a big yelp! When I got near, I saw the biggest deer I have ever seen with antlers that reached towards the sky!
You can barely see him in the above photo because Pigeon's yelp scared him away. We knew instantly this would be a run involving lots of wildlife. I had already had a coyote jump in front of my truck on my drive in.
We made it to the overlook spot and took a few photos. I think mainly we enjoyed the moment to stop, or at least I did. I was struggling.
I don't think Pigeon was intending to do a JCPenny pose however, that is how it appeared to me. I think we are starting to do these kinds of poses subconsciously. Probably not ideal huh?
P-Fresh for Coach Nikon
After goofing off for a few minutes we decided that we needed to make a choice: Are we going to finish our plan, 6 miles out and 6 miles back or call it quits right here and now? Pigeon confided that if she keeps moving, her back is fine but the minute we stop, she seizes up a bit. I, on the other, needed the breaks to rest my exhausted legs and queasy stomach.
Of course we had a glimpse of a moment where we both felt "great" and decided to continue forward to the 6 mile turn around. I don't know about Pigeon, but about half way in I thought "crap, should have called it quits back there."
Still, it was nice to reach the distance and turn around. Turning around for me is always like a "new run" or at least that is how my brain processes it. I break my runs up into sections and the way back is always part 2.
I took the lead for a brief while but realized that I would just slow us down. I let Pigeon go ahead and diligently tried to keep her in my sights.
We were less than 3 miles from the finish when I saw Pigeon stop, turn around and grab me by my shoulders. She said, "You do not want to go this way. Turn around now." Of course curiosity got the better of me and I peeked over her shoulder. I saw about 10 huge turkeys scattered all over the trail. One momma turkey and about 9 babies standing in the middle of the trail, blocking us.
Just a few of the turkeys
Me, hyperventilating because of the above turkeys!
Pigeon told me to "stay here, I am going to take a picture" and off she went . . . with me on her heals. I wasn't going to be left alone so the turkeys could get me! As she approached the turkeys, the mother turkey turned and looked as if she was about to charge my friend . . . I think I screamed which caused the bird to fly which I think caused Pigeon to scream! Oh what sight we must have been.
I realize my fear is probably silly to some and hilarious to others, heck, it is hilarious to me but I still can't get past it. All I kept thinking was, "thank goodness Pigeon was here otherwise I'd be camped out far down the trail all by myself waiting for the turkeys to move on their own."
After a few laughs, we continued on our way. It seems a few trees have fallen since last weekend.
Pigeon's fake action shot
The rest of the run was fairly uneventful. I have to say this was a somber 12 mile run for us as there was barely any talking or joking. I think we're both battling some issues and were within ourselves today more than we were communicating to each other. Still, another great run with a friend. I enjoy my time out on the trails with Pigeon despite the wild and crazy turkeys.
I am learning to enjoy the Cavitt dirt road too. I have come to terms with it. I realized today that I do not like racing on that road but I do like training on it however, you have to be feeling pretty good otherwise that hilly road will kick you while you're down and leave you there to fry in the sun. Today, I feel like it kicked me pretty hard.