Friday, October 13, 2017

Our Place

 I took a bunch of photos of our new place before we mess it all up. 
We are getting really comfortable and back to our old routines.

At first we had no problem with our internet but then it went out.  We called and they sent this guy who was the world's worst internet connector.  He was upset at first because the doorbell didn't work, which is something we I wasn't even aware of.  He stomped around our house of awhile, and even walked right into my room in the back of the house to find me.  Then he told me that he needed me to contact the people across the road and ask them to trim their shrubbery and then call him back.  I am usually such a pushover but I knew that this wasn't going to fly.  I told him that I think it was time to call a different company.  Then he said that he guessed he could call for a bucket truck. 
These other two guys, who clearly knew what they were doing showed up and made him climb up his ladder.  Like, I watched them as they literally stood by and made him climb up the ladder himself.  They hooked up a new cable and were on their way.  He still couldn't get it to work and stomped around my front room for another couple of hours.  He kept saying, "This company says that it values safety, but that was way too dangerous.  I am surprised that I made it."
I am surprised too, that he still has a job. 
He was there from 10 to 2 and when he finally got things working I cheered.  I thought he would be happy that he had finally figured it out, but he just sighed.  I think he was realizing that he was going to have to go start again at another house. 
Poor dude.  He drove me crazy, but I still couldn't help but feel a little sorry for him. 
When they asked me to fill out a customer survey I declined because I don't want that terrifying trip up the ladder to be his last.  Maybe I should have because it is probably just a matter of time until he gets fired anyway. 

I can't se this photo without cracking up.
 The kids made a scene so I could surreptitiously take step by step photos to send to Brandon.

 I think these quick photos that I took of our new house are much better than the ones on the rental website.

 We now live about 7 minutes further from the school that the girls attend.  I thought it was going to be a big pain, but it is working out okay because now they can walk out across the road to me, and I don't have to get the smaller kids out of the car.  This is the best because Ike takes a nap pretty much every day.

Tea Time
 Sometimes Rosy does too.

Taco Lover
 We love the deer and turkeys outside our house.
 Happy Anniversary!!
 Rosy gave us a special anniversary was that she dressed up in this costume. 


Monday, October 9, 2017

100 Miles???!!!

Lots have people have heard me talk about my friends who are awesome runners.  Nobody believes me when I say that they run 100 mile races but now I have seen it with my own eyes and it is even a more incredible feat than I had imagined.
The race they had originally signed up for, Pine to Palm 100 was cancelled because of the forest fires and at the last minute the Headlands 100 reached out to the displaced runners and before I even knew what was going on I found myself early on Friday morning driving to San Francisco with 3 of my best friends.
Audrey and I were going as pacers and crew for Laurie and Heather.
Saturday morning bright and early the runners had their drop bags packed and backpacks filled with other things they may need.  Headlamps, gloves, jackets, extra socks, shoes, and clothes, blister Band-aids, snacks, fuel, electrolytes, hats, headbands, anti-chafing wipes, chargers, batteries and any other running gear you can think of.  Just watching the preparations I started getting tired.
 And then in the foggy and cold morning the runners took off.
Runners weaving up the switchbacks
 After they left Audrey and I went back to the hotel, showered, got some breakfast and packed everything up.  We still had plenty of time to check out the fog surrounding the Golden Gate Bridge.  The aid station was placed right in the middle of a pretty hoppin' tourist spot and a bunch of people were out on the little dock fishing and dumping out crab pots.  None of them could believe that the racers that were passing were planning on doing 100 miles.
When they came in they looked strong.  Probably because they had just come down a huge hill...the bad news was that now they had to go right back up it.

 We had a bunch of time before we could catch them again so we went out to the quaint Sausalito and had pizza at a cute little place.  It was strange because by the beach the sky was cold, foggy and overcast, but just outside the day was bright, sunny and completely gorgeous.
 We stopped and bought some amazing pickles from this guy running a stand.  They were the best pickles I have ever had, either that or Audrey's enthusiasm for this sign just made them taste like they were.

We caught up with our runners again just as it was getting dark.  Maybe there were a few tears shed as we sent them off into the dark night with their headlamps.  The role of a race crew member brings out all the motherliest of instincts and I felt irresponsible letting my ducklings go off into the night.  We watched their headlamps bounce as they climbed the switchbacks and then went back to the car for a dinner of turkey and cheese on a blueberry bagel.  If it doesn't sound delicious, that is because it wasn't.  It was, however, hilarious.
I just couldn't believe that Audrey and I had been having all these adventures and the whole time they had still been running. 

We met up again at 1 AM to make sure that everybody was still alive and well, which they were, and then pulled our car into a parking lot down from the beach to get a couple of hours of sleep.  There were no stars visible, but we had several bobbing headlamps for company. 
The finish line was busy because the 100 miler wasn't the only thing happening.  There was a day marathon, a middle of the night marathon, a 50 miler, a 75 miler, and a midnight 15k and they were all being run at the same time.  Which, if that wasn't confusing enough, one of the aid stations had runners coming and going simultaneously from 4 different directions.  This doesn't even address the fact that many of those runners had been going all day and all night and more than a few of them had gotten sleep deprived enough to be loopy.
We saw many, many people who had to drop out.  We saw blisters being popped and massages and lots of crying.  Those midnight hours were dark and lonely, and that was at the aid station.  By that time Audrey and I had made up stories about who all the runners were and speculated about their crews.  There were two women running together and their husbands were the cutest, most dedicated and attentive helpers.  One of them had to drop out and it just seemed devastating. 
I also learned a lot about running gear.  I didn't know all the intricacies of these long trail runs.  Everybody was wearing hydration packs and so many layers of clothing that could be taken off if the temperature changed.  These trail runners aren't what you normally expect.  I mean, I live in Eugene.  I thought I knew what runners look like.  This was a totally different breed.  They all look tough, but more of an outdoorsy kind of tough.  They weren't the lean, long legged souls I usually see on the track at the high school.  They were obviously fit, but it was more of a muscular, stocky kind of build.  Also, there were so many beards.

We met up again at 5 AM.  It was still dark enough that we needed headlamps for an hour or so.  I was pretty excited to get out and get on the course.  After watching people running all the previous day my feet were itching to go.  Once we got out on the course I was stunned.  I couldn't believe how much elevation was included.  Whenever I would mention how big the mountain we were summiting was Heather would say, "Oh, just wait.  The worst is still ahead."  And she was right.
I already had a huge amount of awe and respect for these women, for even attempting to run 100 miles, but once I saw the course I wanted to kneel right there in the middle of the trail...we're not worthy.

I was all prepared for fog and cold, but wasn't at all expecting the sun.  Hot! Hot! Hot!

We basically hiked the last 25 mile loop, and I'm not gonna lie.  I was exhausted.  Audrey and I both tried to stay upbeat and cheerful (nauseatingly so).  Audrey was so good at it that I didn't even think she was tired until she whispered to me that she was dying and we giggled so hard.  I was half dead just doing one lap.

The lap was gorgeous.  We went up to beautiful views of the Golden Gate Bridge and the bay, and then down into Muir Beach which is so pretty it can't even be described.  The trail took us to amazing overlooks of the ocean and into forests.  I wasn't interested in doing it 4 times, but once was delightful.

Of course, being Marci Rigby, I was obviously interested in the food. 
The aid stations were not what I was expecting.  Upon approach the table looked like it was set up for a party.  Cookies, candies, Skittles, fruit, nuts, and so much Coke.  They were feeding people tacos, and breakfast burritos, soups, and bagels.  They had all kinds of runner stuff too.  Those Gu packets, and waffles, energy bars, salt tabs, and electrolytes.
This led to the very worst part of the race, the bathrooms.  I won't go into detail but there are things that nobody should ever have to see, and the port-a-potties on this race go on that list.

As we got closer to the end we were begging for ice water, and filling the water bottles full of Coke.  I felt like I was breaking some kind of law putting soda into water bottles that are clearly meant for athletes, but it was exactly what they needed: calories, caffeine and sugar that is easily digestible.

Ten hours after we joined up, Audrey and I finished our pacing.  We ran up ahead so that we could have the chairs and the bags ready.  I was so busy filling cups with ice water I missed taking a photo of the triumphant finish, but it was glorious.  Two tough as nails women that used sheer grit and emotional toughness to pull their exhausted bodies through the finish line.  It was an honor and a pleasure to support them. 
Especially because we had so much fun while they were out running.

After they had stretched out and taken off their shoes we walked down to the beach for an ice bath in the ocean.  There were a bunch of stairs leading down to the sand and Heather sat right down on her bottom and scooted down because it was too painful to walk them.  I wasn't surprised because it was crazy what she had just finished.  When we got to the water we stood there for a minute or two.  Heather said, I think I'll lie down on this towel.  I turned and watched the tide come in, and out, and turned back and she was fast asleep.  For a minute I was worried she was dead because I have never seen anyone fall asleep that quickly. 

While she slept I got to spend 15 minutes just watching the ocean, and all the people who had come to enjoy a gorgeous evening on the beach.  I just kept thinking about how amazing human beings are.  The ones that ran 100 miles along with the ones that had probably never run a day in their lives.  There were a bunch of beautiful families, throwing Frisbees and sticks to their dogs, and a little breeze in the air.  The sun was still out but everyone was starting to pack up and make plans for dinner. I just felt lucky to be alive and lucky to have such great friends and a sweet family waiting for me at home, and to so blessed to be able to enjoy such a beautiful world.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

New Digs

 We are thrilled with our new house.  It definitely has its quirks, but the funny things about it are some of my favorite parts of the place.  The best thing is that there is so much space.  We have indoor and outdoor space, a garage and even a couple of little patios.  It might not seem like much to some, but for us it is a perfect fit. 
Big enough that we can all have our own space, but small enough that I can still keep track of everybody. 

Back to school...again.  Rocky and Daisy both were assigned fantastic teachers and were happy to see their friends at Buena Vista.

First Meal

 Ike put on such a lovely hat to explore the yard.

 And we made it back to Eugene just in time to snag the last of the blackberries.