20 November 2010

Boulder, Day 4

Day 4 was the sad day. (Because I had to leave, of course.)

I woke up early(ish), had my usual pre-race breakfast, and headed out to Longmont with Jessica. It was really cold (in the 20s, I think), so Jessica didn't stay to watch. We said goodbye, and I handed her off to her dad (who was visiting from Washington). As for the race -- the Longmont 10k Turkey Trot -- it was HARD. 10ks always are, but at a mile high, it was impossible to maintain the 8:30 pace I had hoped for. I barely kept the miles under 9s, and although I did gain some time toward the end, my placement (within my age group, gender, and overall) wasn't what I'm used to. But I had to get a run in somehow, and running with a thousand of my closest strangers is always better than running alone, so I'm glad I did it.

On the way back to Boulder, I stopped by Julie's house to see her once more and check in with her boys, whom I hadn't seen in five years. They are as sweet as ever.

Then I headed back to Chautauqua one last time (four times in four days!) to finally get a picture of the Flatirons. Although it was overcast again, I finally did capture the massive protruding rocks on film.

And one more for good measure:

I had tried to go for a hike on Day 3, but the snow earlier in my trip had made the trail quite muddy, and I didn't get very far.

After that, it was back to Patti's to do some laundry and pack, and then back to the airport. (Denver's airport is on the faaaar side from Boulder, and it takes about an hour to get there. Figuring in the possibility of traffic, plus time to return the car, take the shuttle to the airport, get my bags checked in, pass through security, take the train to the terminal, and find my gate...well, I left Boulder at 2 for a 4:40 flight (and then had time to spare, as none of the potential bottlenecks turned out to be). Denver could really use a Love Field-type airport on the near side of town. (So if any government officials responsible for that sort of thing happen to be reading...I'd appreciate if you would get right on that. Thanks.)

In conclusion, well, there's really no way to sum up four days in the place where I really think I am supposed to be. Every moment felt right; even the cold mountain air felt right. Thank you, Jessica, for giving me an excuse to get back there. Just say the word, and I'll do it again in a heartbeat.

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