Sunday, April 27, 2008

Sunday Night

This was a very uneventful running weekend for me. I will not be inspiring anyone with this post. (Well, duh.) I got an email from a friend who said he did Capitol Peak, and there was snow which made it tough for a while. Props to the Peak People. I ran a solid hour and a half Thursday, with five Silly Hill repeats. Felt pretty good. On Friday I skipped running, and me and a friend sort of got caught up in this SWAT thing in Bellingham, which was a bad idea after the fact. Saturday was yard day--I planted things, and put bird seed out and got some pet squirrels. Then I decided I wanted to do some Urban Running, and check out Landscaping and Home Designs of Mount Vernon. That worked for a while--it was sunny out, and a lot of old people were telling me Good Job. I spent a couple hours in the gym on Sunday and watched Felix blow a gem of a game--they really should have taken him out--and I read 10 magazines. I also cooked some black eyed peas and red chard in the crock pot, with soba noodles, and listened to the Golden Oldies country station. So...I didn't run 8 hours this weekend, but I feel I got the spirit of it. Photo is a sunset over the Skagit, which I caught on the way home one evening this week. Registered for the Marine Corps Marathon with 5 other Skagit people this week--should be fun. Thinking about doubling up with Mount Masochist in Virginia the following weekend.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Snake In The Snow

IT IS STILL SNOWING! I can't remember a May snowstorm, but we may just be going for it.

I am posting pictures of a snake I found this winter, while out on the trails. Here's the story---I was running on Mount Galbraith one Saturday morning, and this snake was sitting in the middle of the trail, on top of the snow, frozen like an Otter Pop. For real. It was a goner. The snake was like a brick or a stick--if I swung it against a tree, it would've shattered, or something. I don't know how reptiles handle this every year. I've never seen a cold blooded creature frozen. I picked it up--and I don't like snakes---but I had to see what would happen. I wrapped it around my wrist, and ran down the mountain, for roughly a half hour. I wanted to see what would happen. Sure enough, after a while, the snake started to warm up, and reanimate....wiggling a little, but sort of dopey, and not a threat to me. So, I took a few pictures of it back at the rig, and then threw it in the back of the pickup.
I figured I'd let it loose in my backyard, but I ended up giving it to this waitress, who said her kids like snakes. Apparently they sell for $20 on the street. The snake was doing fine in captivity, I was told, a week later, but then---a few weeks later--the snake died, because the waitress fed the snake too many crickets at once, and the crickets attacked the snake, and tore it to shreds. I'm not sure I believe this---I think the kids might have been involved---but it is a pretty cool story. I've never heard of attack crickets.
I've seen some other good critters this winter. I saw a porcupine out behind Lost Lake a few months ago. It was big and slow and had green quills. I've seen a few owls and a bunch of raptors. During the fall, I saw tons of salmon in Padden Creek--they get big. Last night when I was running, I heard a ton of loud bull frogs, off the Interurban. I'm pretty sure you can spotlight bullfrogs, and then throw them in bags. I spotlighted a deer on Sehome Hill a couple months ago. I am definitely going to try it on these frogs this summer.
Last night's run was awesome. I love long Friday night runs, and taking some time off does wonders--I ran well. 3.5 hours. Started in Fairhaven, went up the Chuckanut Ridge in reverse, down Chinscraper, around Fragrance and out the backside, and then back to Fairhaven. The Ridge was completely clear of snow, but it is a touch slower in reverse. Caught the setting sun from the ridge, full moon on the flats. No one around, except the frogs.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Off The Grid

I had my first DNS of the year today. The Mt. Si 50 miler was paid for, but it just didn't sound or feel right, so I bailed. Too easy, and too necessary, to just hang out and home and do the 50 other things I have to do, like my income taxes for instance. I don't think I can run faster than Uncle Sam, and I am not starting that race. Then there's class prep--I'm teaching immigration law and policy at Western this spring for the first time, and as cool as that is, I am finding the class requires a fair amount of my weekend time to prep. Students have questions! Who would've thought? Then there's the other home stuff, like yard, laundry, plants, etc. Plus, Skagit is awesome right now, with the Tulp Festival going on, and I was at the County Caucus on Saturday. Excuses, excuses, excuses. It just feels good to blow off a race, after paying for it. Sort of like a sick day, where you know you could've went in if you had to. I've done four ultras and 2 half marathons since the start of the year, and I don't want to burn out before summer comes. Wasatch continues to be the goal. Driving to North Bend on Sunday at 4 AM would be ok, but for all of the above stuff. Plus I watched this great movie about Donkey Kong last night, and that kept me up. Running is all about fun, finding myself, enjoying my surroundings--it's my leisure, not my job. I'm cool with the DNS and I'm going to eat some potato chips today too. Eugene is next.