This is what, post number 4 in three days?! But I NEEED to!!
Today we earned another $15 for the Women's Refuge, bringing our total to $1030 (the last $15 won't be online yet, as it's a reward for a challenge from my sister). We're pretty pleased to be over our goal of $1000, and we're amazed at how generous people have been, but we hope that the fact that we've met our unambitious and arbitrary goal won't deter others from donating!
So this morning after watching the Game That Shall Not be Named*, P and I braved the winds (up to 130kph today.. SHITE) and headed out to Eastbourne to hunt down the Pencarrow lighthouse. I always gaze across the harbour at the lighthouses when I'm running round Breaker Bay/Moa point and think "I've got to run there one day", so my sister is sponsoring me $15 for each of this run and another challenge I've always wanted to do.
Today's run was complicated by the fact that I could not find any reliable map- so although I knew roughly where we were going, I had no idea how long it would take to get there. The trail's long, and my googling just couldn't quite assure me that the lighthouse was close enough to make it a doable "recovery" run.
So there we were, pissed off and uncertain, with tired legs after the 20-mile run (me) and 120k ride (P) yesterday, wondering whether we'd be out for an hour, or two, or more and worrying that the downpour that hit us on the motorway would return. We decided to run for awhile, and just go with the flow. If we didn't make it, we knew we had next weekend (but only next weekend). We set out along the flat 4WD track, with the wind mostly at our backs, but the waves wild to our west (?). Every few metres, we'd spot a lamb or a kid on the trail or off to the side. Cute! Despite some leg stiffness, I felt good and when I asked P how the pace felt, he said it was "comfortable-to-effort" rather than "so easy I can't believe you're actually running", which is what I'm always scared he's thinking!
It was one of those great runs- it hurts, but it feels invigorating, and you feel staunch and adventurous. I love those runs! We knew it was going to be tough on the way back, but after the first, slow, ten minutes, we were plodding along happily and the minutes were flying by. I haven't run with P for ages (actually, it was September. well, it feels like ages!) and we have a lot of fun together. Especially with a blind, unfair-sinbinning, blatant forward-pass ignoring, pommie ref to bag!
At about 27 minutes, we saw a sign in the distance, and decided to see if it told us anything useful. We were having fun, but we weren't that keen to be out for more than an hour with no lighthouse and, therefore, no bucks! The first thing it told us was something to do with sewage. Right- not interesting. It then seemed to show that we were less than half way there. Ouch! I didn't want to do 2+ hours out and back, and I certainly wasn't going to do that to my boy! But then I noticed that the map was "incomplete"- it started from a point I thought was quite a lot further along, rather than from the beginning. Given that this was the second sign on the walkway, I think a slightly better indictator of proportion would have helped. So we decided to walk up to the next corner and to see what lay ahead. We trotted forward, pushed along by the insane winds, and when we reached the corner, we saw the lighthouses, only a few hundred metres away!
This really spurred us on- I was elated, so pleased we'd checked the next corner instead of turning back in a grump. We had planned to walk the steep path up to the top lighthouse (there are two, but the top one is the historically significant one), but when we got there I knew I wanted to run, at least for awhile. Of course this made P run too, and I trailed behind him up the first leg of the hill before telling him when the trail widened that he'd become a real little mountain goat. Oops- that only encouraged him, and all of a sudden I'm struggling to keep him in sight up a steep, rocky hill in the 130kph winds! He stopped at the top, but before the lighthouse, and I decided I just had to keep running until I got to him, but then as soon as I neared him, the little brat dashed up to the lighthouse and I had to follow. Could barely catch my breath at the top, as it was really REALLY exposed and I had to put most of my effort into sitting upright. After sitting with P for awhile, we made our way around the lighthouse, and I was very relieved to get to the other side in time to grab the door handles and not get blown away. P was trying to talk to me from about 1m away, and I could only see his mouth moving. AWESOME!
We ran/walked the way home- nothing much to prove, and the soul destroying wind made the pain of running outweigh the desire to reach our car. 38 minutes out, 52 back!
Then it was fish and chips in the car in Days Bay, and home for a hot bathng, then chilling out here while the rain beats down outside! The storm is pretty crazy out there- and although I'm usually really into sitting inside watching lightning and waiting for thunder, the two got a little close for comfort, and I don't like to think of my man out in his wee car picking up dinner and movies!
What a great day (apart from the aforementioned Game...), and what a lucky girl I am!
*Interestingly, patriotic rugby fervour is reasonably new to me. I used to follow Pip's school of thought, and reserved a certain satisfaction when we choked in 99. Through uni I started trying too hard to be into sports, thinking it would make me less unpopular with the lads, then after starting work and, well, having clients, I realised how much more enjoyable it is to actually enjoy sports in NZ. Drinking beer and watching cricket in the sun; listening to cricket on the car radio during summer road trips; jumping on the couch and screaming as a group of fabulously built guys in short shorts and gun-hugging black jerseys push the egg-shaped ball over the white paint line. Yum!