Thursday, June 12, 2014

Vacation - All I Ever Wanted

   Yes, I'm on vacation this week. Dudley and I are currently in my childhood home in Oakton, VA visiting my parents. We all just got back from a whirlwind trip to New York City, where we were celebrating my parent's 50th wedding anniversary. That's right- FIFTY YEARS. Insane.
Hello, New York!! 

   Of course, being that I'm training for Chattanooga AND I'm running a half-marathon this weekend, the FIRST thing I did after checking into the hotel was go for a run. Nope - I'm not kidding you. I had eight miles on my schedule and if it's on the schedule - it has to be done. Fortunately, we were only about 10 blocks from Central Park, so Dudley and I headed down there to run. Apparently, it was Puerto Rico day in NYC and there was a huge parade that had just ended right in front of the park when we got there. Needless to say - Central Park was PACKED. It was nuts. I thought our parks got busy on the weekends, but Central Park on a beautiful Sunday was a completely different experience. But it was awesome. A lot hillier than I expected, but awesome. I would run there every day if I lived in NYC. Every. Day.
   While I'm not going to bore you with the details of every minute of my trip, I will mention one major stop - the 9/11 memorial and museum. I admit, we were all a little hesitant to go. It just kind of seemed...inappropriate. It was interesting and horrifying at the same time. Everyone there just sort of wandered around glassy-eyed looking at the damaged fire-trucks and the bent steel beams that used to be the Twin Towers. Though I tried to stay away from some of the personal artifacts of the victims, they were impossible to avoid. I had to keep reminding myself that the families released these materials to the museum, so it was OK for me to be seeing / hearing them...but it still felt wrong. We actually left before going into the Memorial Exhibition of the museum, which had photos of all of the victims, along with biographical information. That was just too much for us to handle. Even after our visit, I'm still not sure how I feel about the museum, or if we should have gone. And no, I didn't take any photos while I was there and yes, I wanted to smack the crap out of the people who were taking smiling selfies at the memorial. WTH?
   The museum was pretty much the only planned event we had in NYC, other than my parent's anniversary dinner.  For the rest of the trip, we visited all of the regular places - Times Square, Fifth Avenue, Grand Central Station, etc.

My camera doesn't do Grand Central justice. It's amazing.

Madison Square Garden. Poor Rangers lost 3-0 that night.

 Because it had to be done...

   We also got to eat in great places like this:

The restaurant used to be a sheep farm...hence the sheep on the logo.

And eat wonderful food like this:

So. Good.

   We also took a quick trip down to the apartment where my parents used to live when I was a little girl. Yes, that's right - though I'm a Southerner now, and a Washingtonian at heart, I was born a New Yorker and proud of it. 
   Fortunately, my coach took my vacation into consideration this week and didn't overload me with crazy workouts, though I still had something to do everyday. Even with all of the traveling, I've been able to workout everyday, including the swimming and biking.  No rest when you're training for Ironman.  
   Next up is the Hatfield-McCoy Half-Marathon this weekend, which I have been looking forward to for over a year.  Dudley and I were both injured for this race last year, and the race organizers were kind enough to defer our entries until this year. You run past a lot of the places where the famous feud took place. It sounds right up my alley and I can't wait!!  
   See you on the roads! 

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