Friday, April 24, 2009

Race Day -- Boston Marathon

Race day was partly cloudy and the wind was gusting from 10-15 mile per hour. Shev woke at 5 am and dressed for the day. We went downstairs to the cafĂ© in the Jewel. Being so early, it was dark and unattended. Item's needed for breakfast were sitting out and ready. Mouldi Sayeh, the proprietor had been up late the evening prior. In addition, his wife wasn't feeling well. I suspect she’s the glue in his life. I’d really warmed to his company and hospitality. Finding the light switches took a few minutes. As it should be, the Jewel's espresso machine is always on so I prepared the morning java for me and my wife. The machine for me became a highlight. This was not my first go at using it. It's a beautiful gold Rancillio four group machine. The Jewel needs a steaming pitcher and I prefer skim milk for lattes. If I should find some Algerian patterned coffee cups and a steamer I will send them to him.Most modern coffee-drinkers are probably unaware of coffee's heritage in the Sufi orders of Southern Arabia. Members of the Shadhiliyya order are said to have spread coffee-drinking throughout the Islamic world sometime between the 13th and 15th centuries CE. A Shadhiliyya shaikh was introduced to coffee-drinking in Ethiopia, where the native highland bush, its fruit and the beverage made from it were known as bun. It is possible, though uncertain, that this Sufi was Abu'l Hasan 'Ali ibn Umar, who resided for a time at the court of Sadaddin II, a sultan of Southern Ethiopia. 'Ali ibn Umar subsequently returned to the Yemen with the knowledge that the berries were not only edible, but promoted wakefulness. To this day the shaikh is regarded as the patron saint of coffee-growers, coffee-house proprietors and coffee-drinkers, and in Algeria coffee is sometimes called shadhiliyye in his honor.

Shev really didn’t have the perfect pre-race breakfast. She choose bread and cereal with whole milk. I could sense her concern. Rich came down about ½ hour later and he had the foresight to bring some instant oatmeal. I wasn't worried. Shev left about 6, kissed her for luck because everyone knows, the marathon is all about luck. She left for the commons area to catch her bus. Rich still had a while to wait around so we headed back to our rooms. Last night, as official wine taster, I had my marathon so I headed back to bed. I really needed the extra shut eye. Haufnaui, Mouldi’s son wanted to go with me the night before but he wasn't around when I was needing to leave. Later his dad said he wanted him to sleep in. I had to hike a few blocks farther than normal to catch the train. Most of the stops near the finish are closed on race day. Surprisingly, the outbound stations aren't too crowded. I thought it best to head as far out on the green line as I could because the trains would be getting pretty crowded with people heading back to watch the finish. So I went to the Cliff gel stop at mile 17. Turns out it was a great spot to spectate. I could see the course really well. It was exciting to see the women’s elite so tightly packed at that point. I could tell it was going to be a battle. I took this photo. Ok. You gotta admit. Kara Goucher is hot!!! Whooooaaa boy! Even Shev would understand my excited electrons when it comes to this girl!!! She can melt hard iron on those abs! Wow. My life is complete.

By the time shevs group came by It had gotten so thick with crowds and runners I missed Shev completely! Oh well. Shev ran an AWESOME race. Negative splitting and achieving her pace goal of 3:25. I finally caught up to her after the race.  No wonder I didn't recognize her! WHERE did you get that outfit!?! I'm just kiddin :-). You paid more for those threads than you would have for anything at the Gucci boutique. ITS ABOUT SO MUCH MORE THAN THE MONEY... You just can't buy it!!!!!!! WAY TO GO SHEV!!!! I LOVE YOU!

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