[update at bottom – post unchanged]
On Sunday, after Sharkfest I followed FeLady and Mr. FeLady to their hotel to take a shower and get dressed so we could all go out to brunch. On the way there we drove along the waterfront in San Francisco and I found myself reminiscing about various races thinking “This is part of the course for Bridge to Bridge and for the SF Marathon – I love this run” and then, as we headed up into the Presidio, “This is the hill you run up for the Nike Half Marathon”. On the way back from brunch we drove along the Great Highway and I exclaimed “Right there is where I met up with the Dread Pirate Rackham after the Bay to Breakers a couple of weeks ago”. The area looked so deserted compared to race day when there are tens of thousands of people out there but in my mind’s eye I could see it all and I could feel my post B2B sense of accomplishment and runners high.
I love that particular benefit of cycling and running – the changed perspective on my surroundings. Roads from Point A to Point B become so much more. They become fond memories of my favorite parts of training or racing because I do my best to forget the bad parts and just remember the parts that made me feel strong or that were fun or where I just really enjoyed the scenery. It always fills me with joy and repeatedly makes me grateful for my fitness and willingness to be an athlete (see – I’m getting better at this. I just said I’m an athlete – woo hoo!)
On Friday as I was flying back from San Diego I looked out the window over the SF Bay as we descended to the Oakland Airport.
I could clearly see the Golden Gate Bridge and the Bay Bridge and Alcatraz in between. I could see Aquatic Park, too with this sort of visual acuity:
(photo compliments of Bay Turtle Photography)
but from this angle:
I looked at that view and remembered my swim and all of the things about it that bring a smile to my face over and over again. That’s not just the SF Bay any more. That’s the place where I took that really great swim.
**UPDATE- as FeLady pointed out I had the picture wrong. I had us swimming from Angel Island because I thought Alcatraz was a ship due to looking at the aerial view from too high up. I had photoshoped it out of the picture!! DOH! See – I really can get lost on the swim portion of an event. In fact, I’m really good at it!