Alive?

Yes. Much more? No.

paying my debt

Sleep debt, that is. I've been averaging about six hours of sleep a night for the past week. I know that's plenty for some go-getter alpha types, but I have to say, I'm not thriving. In advertising terms I think you could say that I'd like 50% more resting hours for complete satisfaction. What is my reason for the limited Zs? Well, mainly it's a combination of going to bed late and getting up early. That'll do it, I find. The interesting thing is that I still wake up every morning right on time, between 6:20 and 6:30, without any need for an alarm. Isn't that a considerable achievement, worthy of some sort of reward? I think so!

Tonight, I go to bed early. Or at least on time.

fallen

For those of us who follow a two-season calendar, the winter has now officially begun. We had a week or two of beautiful foliage, but Tuesday's brisk wind brought nearly all the leaves (as well as a few boughs and even whole trees) down. The changing season also means the storm windows have come down, and the farmers market is no more for this year. That last is too bad, because we didn't put up nearly enough preserves to last us through the winter! I mourned the departing season last week when I ate the last spoonful of delicious summery strawberry jam, and cursed my lack of forethought in making only one batch. Next year the cellar will be full. Full, I tell you!

After a cool beginning to October the month has been unseasonably warm, so the tomatoes at least have kept on going (and going). This morning, though, the outside temperature is just at freezing, so I imagine it is now all over for them. That we were a little overwhelmed by the bounty they provided is evidenced by the carpet of red under the plants, but even allowing for those 200 we missed we got plenty of tomato goodness all summer long, and Leah even roasted a few to enjoy once the plants were gone. Next year we'll do more.

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scheduling conflict

Because of her big race tomorrow, Leah wanted to go to bed early—like, at around 7:30. Still recovering from a touch of sickness on Thursday, I would have been glad to join her, except for a prior commitment: watching game three of the World Series, which like the other games started at the ridiculous time of 8:37 or something. At least this time there's the excuse of the Mountain Time zone, but still! If it's the goal of MLB to create a nation of zombies here on the east coast, then mission accomplished. Well, I'll be a zombie at least. I'm told other folks can stay up past nine and still be able to function the next day, but I just can't seem to manage it.

At least the Sox are winning!

a marathon race

Leah ran her first marathon today, and, as every one but her expected, she finished it in good time. And unlike the original marathon runner, she didn't even die! She'll no doubt have more to say about it when she wakes up in a couple days, but she asked me to put up some pictures. So here they are!

Things were kind of crowdy at the start.

a picture (sorry, that's all we got for now)

Rascal was very interested in the proceedings, and he joined with me in cheering all the runners.

We cheered Leah especially hard, of course! She was still going strong at mile 19.

The finish line was as chaotic as the start, so this is not the finest documentary image. Still, it clearly shows that she finished the race, and at 4 hours and 19 minutes or thereabouts. Congratulations Leah!!!

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Notes on the Cape Cod Marathon

Before i started training for this marathon, i thought that running a marathon was like a mystical goal... something so challenging that only a sub-set of extra-super-hard-core humans could accomplish it. It turns out that a marathon is just like any other road race, only wicked longer. And considerably more boring. My official time isn't posted yet, but according to my watch I finished just under 4:19. Have you ever exercised for over four hours straight? It's not so much hard as it is a really long time.

But all in all I had a great time, and Dan and Rascal were the BEST SUPPORT CREW EVAR!!!!! Well, it's not totally true that i had a great time. I had a great time up until mile 20, and then the next two miles were significantly uncomfortable, and then the last four miles were like those nightmares that you sometimes have when you're trying to get away from something but can't run any faster. Only with more knee pain. But i had a great time being finished!!! And then i had a good time sleeping from 4:30pm till this morning.

I'm not so sore today except for going up and down stairs. Well, good think i work in front of a computer!!!

4:19:55

It's official; that's my marathon time. I could totally do so much better. Besides the last six miles hurting like a mofo, I felt that I could have pushed myself on the other 20 and I was just holding back to make sure I saved enough for the end. I'm trying to find a race in the spring/summer on which to beat 4 hours. Unfortunately it can't be our little local race we have here in boston, because you gotta up and qualify for that... at 3hrs 40min in a different marathon. Um, maybe next year.

a Halloween reversal

Well, not a reversal for us necessarily, but a reversal from traditional expectations. To wit, even with the small amount of candy I purchased we had too much for the three groups of kids who were all who made it to our door. I didn't want any extra candy sitting around, nor did Leah, so I begged them to take as much as they want. You'll be astounded to hear that they resisted taking even a third item! Here I'd been hearing all these stories of kids grabbing for as many sweets as they could take, emptying bowls left outside of doors, and squabbling for the crumbs. Not these polite youngsters, however! Hey, the kids are alright.

Also I finally managed to carve a jack o' lantern, after several years of... not managing to. Here it is:

a picture (sorry, that\'s all we got for now)

To prove it's made from a real pumpkin, here it is raw and unlit:

Oh yes: Happy Halloween everyone! I'm glad it's over. Only 54 more shopping days until Christmas!

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