Half way…

I apologize for the lack of pictures in this upcoming blog… I promise that when I get a chance I will upload some pictures of the most recent adventures I’ve taken part in (Including a 10 hour hike of the Tongariro Crossing [see previous blog..] plus a 1500 m straight up climb to the top of The Lord Of The Ring’s: Mount Doom).

Hmm… Who will read on now, knowing that this story is not yet being told?

While for many of you at home in the states the end of the semester is in view, we down here in New Zealand have just completed the first half of our trimester and are currently on a two week break from everything Uni. To start off my refreshing break from the dense wall of work that I just broke through, I entered a race in a suburb of Wellington called Upper Hutt. Having to rely on the train to get there, and knowing that I’d have no particular place to keep anything, I shoved some cash into my running shorts, tied my shoes, threw on an extra long sleeve shirt and made my way to the railway station. When I arrived in Upper Hutt 45 minutes later, I made my way to the race beneath the somewhat forboding looking sky.

There was a 21k (Half marathon) and 10k to choose from, and not having run much more than 6 or so miles in some time, I went with the 10k to be safe- boy what a good decision that was! The race started in a heavy drizzle, and only progressed from there. Not 5 minutes into the all-grass course, lightening struck and thunder followed… apparently that’s the signal for the rain to pick up! Carrying on the pattern, the next strike of lightening turned the huge rain drops into hail! I couldn’t help laughing at times- what an insane race! Luckily by about 5k in the worst of the weather was over, and it continued to digress to a heavy drizzle by the end. Phew!

Worried about being chilled in the very little clothes that I had with me, I changed into my dry top and considered skipping the awards ceremony and instead working my way back down to Wellington. But the sun came out! And it was warm and drying- and I ended up being quite comfortable, talked with some wonderful people in the Wellington area, and ended up staying through the awards. The awards were the basic First place runner for each race, youngest finisher, earliest entry, etc… what wasn’t expected is that there was an award from the male and female from the furthest away! (lucky me!) There were two international individuals in the race- me (from NY) and a man from Great Britain! So I won a nice thermal tshirt, and found myself quite proud to have been at the small road race from so far away :o).

I made my way back to my flat on The Terrace, and had a marvelous night’s sleep. That was 3 days ago. Now, I’ve just finished packing a big frame pack that I’m borrowing from a friend, and am heading to the south island bright and early tomorrow morning for a week and a half long back packing trip! I’ll spend the first couple of days on my own in Picton and Nelson, and then I’m meeting up with two other people who I’m going to be hiking and camping with for the rest of the time… So I’ll leave you in dire anticipation of what stories are next to come, and get a good night’s rest.

Goodnight, Friends!

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