Saturday, December 30, 2006


I have been putting in some serious time with the family, this holiday. Absolutely the best, especially loving up my daughter. I have painted all of the furniture for her bedroom, and my wife helped her organize a boatload of stuff and purge the extraneous. It will be nice for her to be able to start the New Year with a New to follow.

Also, my friend Tink took a bunch of pics of my birthday party, which I'll be posting soon..may have to put electrical tape over some of the eyes, though! I'll blog the experience when I can tell the story with pictures...Hope everyone is having a beautiful Christmas and is set for a safe and happy New Year.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Mango 5.0

I woke up and it was cold. I knew it the second I was awake. My body kept telling me to stay in bed. I gazed across the bed, bleary eyed, at the clock: 5:26. You have to be kidding? Do you know how cold it is going to be out there? Yes.

I sat up in bed. Not even the dog was going to get up with me at this hour. I went in to the bathroom and drank two cups of water and grabbed my gear from the closet. My new hat and reflective jacket were waiting to be used--my wife's Merry Christmas to me. She insisted on the Mango color (yes, it's REALLY called Mango), because it was brighter, and less likely to get me run over.

"I love that woman," I thought.
The bitter-angry-part of my body that still wanted to be in bed replied, "If it weren't for her, we'd still be sleeping like smart people everywhere."

I went downstairs, made the coffee and headed out the door. Turns out I was right--it was cold...only, not as cold as I thought. I found my stride quickly. I started up the hill at the half-mile mark and was feeling pretty warm. At a little past the one mile mark, I had to take the hat off. At that point I was feeling really good and decided to make it a longer run than I initially planned. I made the right out toward the high school.

It started to snow. I put the hat back on, but Iw as still feeling pretty good, nice and warm. I got to the turnaround. It was suddenly thrust upon me why I was doing so well. The first 70% of my run had been done with a tailwind. There was a 15 mph wind in my face...with gusts of about 30 mph.

"There's only one way home," I said.
"Dumbass," said Mr. Bitter.

I turned for home, then made the longer turn that would make this a 5 mile run, just to shut mr. Bitter up. He did. I climbed the last challenging hill and knew I was cruising for home. I said a prayer of thanks, running through the snow, that I was still strong enough to do this.

I went to the store and made breakfast. I'm looking at the clock now. It's 8.30. THAT is a FULL morning.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

White Christmas...

I'm dreaming of a Funky White Christmas for you and yours.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Take a Ride....

I thought THIS VIDEO was a beautiful ride. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did...

ANd while you're out taking a spin, take a ride with DEXTER BENJAMIN. It's a great picture of the human spirit and living life by your own terms. I say, "Well done."

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

More from the Nature Hike...

A couple more pics from my hike with my daughter...In her tree once again

The Center also has a beaver dam display, where kids can crawl around and see what it's like to live as a winter beaver.

Wildwood Nature Center

I took my daughter to Wildwood Nature Center and went on a hike. Snapped a couple pics of the adventure, and I'm also including some from our trek this summer (the ones where she is in short sleeves. She was amazed to learn we hiked TWO WHOLE MILES(!) on this hike. We also saw squirrels, titmouse, wood ducks, Candian geese, finches, and woodpeckers. In the swampier parts, we saw tracks from deer, racoons, and what I suspect was a bear (it was way too big to be anything else).


Me and my hiking partner:

She loves to climb this tree:


Her picture of the woodpecker:

Anticlimactic...thank God

I went ot my FIRST monthly checkup with my radiation oncologist, Dr. Kottapally. Everything checked out just fine, and it was really almost a formality. He'll continue to monitor me, and he wants me to go back for a complete blood count (CBC), which will also be part of the monitoring process.

The only caveat he gave me--DON'T SKIP OR MISS APPOINTMENTS! "That is how we get ourselves into trouble," he said, sagely. (It's funny, as I type this, and the other things he says, I always hear his voice. It's very much the stereotypical English of the Indian subcontinent, and I always hear the very proper English grammar and style behind it). "You should be cancer free for the rest of your days, but if it comes back, it will be dealt with more aggressively. We simply must know as early as possible." That almost certainly means chemotherapy, and attacking it with maximum harshness and discipline.

So, I will coninue to visit Dr. Kottapally, as well as my urologist, Dr. Wenger, and they'll work in concert with me. Hopefully the future appointments will be as easy as this one.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Still Running

I went for my longest run in a loooooooong time, with regard to both duration and distance. I covered 5.3 miles in 1 hour and 1 minute, according to my official timepiece (the clock on the wall). I realy would like to get a heart rate monitor and watch.

It was chilly this morning, but the wind wasn't blowing and it actually wasn't bad. I wore my PI AmFib gloves and they were way too warm. My hands were sweating at the end of the first mile, so I just took them off and carried them after that. I thought it was going to be more of a hassle than it was. I wore the t-shirt, I slept in (cotton is NOT a good choice for this kind of run. It holds all of your sweat, and holds it close to the body. It wasn't bad on the run, but the cool-down was a little chilly) and two long sleeved workout shirts. On top of that, I threw on my shell (a rough term for the wind-breaker-like jacket I wear that neither breaks the wind nor provides a shell; God bless my wife: this is my Christmas gift this year) on top of that.

I also wore my fleece headband instead of a hat...maybe next time I'll wear the wicking one. Overall, the temperature of The Running Fish was just about right. I'm still getting used to regulating this, so it's like a minor miracle when I get it right.

It's really cool to be building a base, and I want to start experimenting with some interval and speed work. I also added some stretches at the end of the run and then went for a walk with my daughter and my dog as I cooled down.

We watched the steam rising off my body as we walked...