Thursday, November 4, 2010


The last two months have brought with them a little bit of everything. Travel. Adventure. Tears. Laughter. Questions. Answers. And Change.

My last post detailed my issues with which (if any) half-marathon to choose for the fall/winter season this year...which was a real, credible dilemma at the time (one I've since resolved - but more on that later). The next weekend was spent hanging out in Winston with my college buddy, Shelly, while Erich and Barry headed to the Empire State for a Battenkill adventure. Good times!

After a great book club with the girls, complete with delicious food and wine (and the occasional mention of a book for good measure), September took a really different turn on its usual road to autumnal happiness. The inexplicable losses of two of our friends' fathers in the span of just 9 days changed, well...everything, really. Plans. Perspectives. Just...everything.

In between two funerals, Amy and I tackled one of our favorite races, the Salem Lake 10K. We weren't really planning to do that race at all. And we certainly weren't really trained for it. But it just didn't matter. That particular trip around the lake was about something very different from heart rates and split times. And it might have been our slowest - and best - one yet.

I celebrated my 31st birthday with a few of my favorite Canadians. Bonding with Janet's beautiful new daughter reaffirmed two things I already knew: 1.) She's a tiny kindred spirit. And 2.) I should probably give up having a kid before I even start because I'm pretty sure I can never make one that cute. It's so odd and wonderful to watch one of my best friends be a mother. It's like...we're growing up and stuff. So, so much love. And way too little time.
In the middle of the Canadian invasion, we also hosted a party for the City Loop Mafia following their (non) annual 100K. Pedaling their way through The Dash as the leaves are just starting to turn...and then gathering together with mafiosa family and friends for chili, beer, and college football...that's a tradition I hope we hold on to for a long time to come.

And then in between clinics and Erich's trip to Baltimore to present his latest research, we made time for a deep-fried Reese's Cup at the Dixie Classic Fair. And a winter weather prediction at the Woolly Worm Festival...followed immediately by Brunswick Stew and homemade apple butter at the Valle Country Fair. And what fall season would be complete without a trip to Colonial Williamsburg for a walk down Duke of Gloucester Street and a little Tribe football action? Long story short, I met the Griffin; the Tribe sealed their 1-point victory in the final 30 seconds; and going back home again never really gets old.

So now it' A few days status-post Halloween party (Flo the Progressive Insurance Girl + Iceman from Top Gun = 4ever). And just a day and a half of clinic left to round out the week. Then Starnes and I take off on Saturday for a girls-only road trip to Wilmington. She committed to the Battleship Half Marathon long ago. Before the fall got so chilly. And so hard. While I'm certainly not trained up for a half-marathon, I've decided to tackle it with her, allowing for plenty of walking. And soreness. And hard-earned fun! In true half-marathon fashion, I've summoned the winter to join us. So the forecast low of 35 degrees on Sunday morning (in Wilmington!) should really surprise no one. If you think about it, that's actually quite balmy compared to 31 degrees with freezing rain and snow in Orlando for my first half-marathon. Seriously?! Seriously.

Even today as I write this, the rain has been falling, and there's a noticeable drop in the temperature. The leaves, once brilliant orange and red and gold, now letting go of their branches and drifting to the ground. The pattern of living in this particular fall season has felt something like that to me, I think. So many experiences, both happy and sad. Beautiful, vivid colors...and letting go. Some things have changed forever...precious new life and deep, painful loss. Other things have changed just for now, much like the trees. And then there are those few, invaluable things that never unseasonably wintry half-marathons. And friendship. And love.


  1. good luck with the race, jill! we'll be thinking about you!

  2. Thanks so much, Lowes! We'll report back :)