Sunday, 1 March 2015

Friends Chilly Willy And Another Half Marathon

Some of you may know that I am now on social media. I have signed up for facebook despite thinking I never would. How did this come about?
Adam gave into the temptation of the apple with Eve offering it to him. One day while looking up sites on the Computer I gave into my temptation. Beautiful wife over one shoulder and beautiful daughter over my other shoulder encouraged me to sign up. What is a man to do in the face of such temptation? Who knows what Adam would have given up if later in life Eve ganged up on him with a daughter?
Immediately I had requests to be friends with some of my friends I have known a long time. Later on a different group came into the picture as my Ratanak friends, the movers and shakers of Ratanak International "poked" me.

 One day a friend request came from someone I knew from high school. This man was an enforcer in Junior hockey. He is six feet two inches tall and weighs two hundred and forty pounds of solid muscle. As I thought of the first group of friends. I saw a College All American football player, athletes, martial artists, power lifters. I thought of the physical size and strength of a lot of my old friends. I thought of the fighting process some of these men have, they remind me of David`s mighty men from The Bible. I thought of how some of them were rough around the edges. I thought of how they never wear masks, they are who they are. If you judge them and do not accept them they do not care. If you are a friend of theirs you are a friend for life and they would do anything for you if you are in need. I concluded they are the type of people Jesus spent his time on earth with.
My Ratanak friends are a bit more polished, (Janice?) yet they have something in common with my old friends. My Ratanak friends fight as well, and they fight hard. Their fight is not in arena`s, or stadiums, or boxing rings. Their fight is not really against man. Their fight is against the forces of evil that take young children and force them into a life of sexual slavery. My Ratanak friends fight this battle with tears and prayers. They raise funding through walkathon`s, piano recitals, concerts, and art auctions. Victory is accomplished when a child is released from evil`s grasp. 
I am proud to call both sets of people my friends!
One aspect of facebook is the "friend" section. My daughter made fun of me for my lack of friends. Compared to others I seem to be lagging behind, although I find it interesting that some people with so many facebook friends are so lonely. I know my number of friends are quality, not quantity.
A song from the past.
Friends Whodini

How many of us have them?
Ones we can depend on?
Friends is a word we use every day
Most of the time we use it in the wrong way

Now you can look the word up again and again
But the dictionary doesn`t know the meaning of friends
And if you ask me I couldn`t be much help
Because a friend is somebody you judge for yourself

Some are ok and they treat you real cool
But some mistake kindness for being a fool
We like to be with some because they`re funny
Others come around when they need some money
And this list goes on again and again
But these are the people that we call friends

Facebook I see in comparison to a raw material. If I use my time on social media as a way to share of my passion for bringing justice for people in Cambodia in a sensitive manner to people who have never heard of this issue I am using it in a positive way, similar to using raw materials to build, houses, shelters, hospitals, bridges, etc.
If I am not careful I can be used by social media. The only difference between the material used to build a hospital, or a wheel chair and the material used to build a tank, or a gun is the mold that it was formed in.

In the latest running room magazine a section is set apart showing various clothing and the temperatures that they are to be worn in.
The first page showed clothes that were to be worn from 0 to - 5. The next page showed clothes from -5 to -15. The last page showed clothes to be worn from -15 to -30. There was not a section for what clothes to wear at -41.
One night while looking up the predicted temperature for my upcoming long run this was the number that stared back at me.
The whole day was to be this cold so delaying for a few hours would not see this number drop at all, the only thing that would drop would be my enthusiasm. So bright and early I headed out for my two hour and 5 minute run.
The wind was 80 km/h and the first half of my run was into this wind. I saw only one other person crazy enough to be out on this day, a speed walker who nodded politely to me as we passed each other.
This was the coldest day I have ever ran on and something new happened. The wind was making my eyes water, and something I learned this day was that at -41 the water in your eyes does not stay water when exposed to the extreme cold, in fact this water becomes ice. So every few minutes I had to take a glove off and pull the ice out of my eyes.
I told Gloria I felt like "Chilly Willy" a cartoon character from my childhood a cute Penguin who used to cry ice cubes.

On my way to my latest race named what else this winter the Chilly Half Marathon Gloria and Isabella accompanied me as Katarina had an essay due for school.

Mighty to Save is on the radio, these are some of the words.
Saviour He can move the mountains
My God is mighty to save
He is mighty to save
I always enjoyed signing this song in Church as I relate it to children in Cambodia. The words challenge me as I do believe God is mighty to save, God wants to save but in my opinion we are the ones that are holding Him back.

The next song was a One Direction song. Anyone with an almost teenage daughter, and a teenage daughter can relate that I was not allowed to change the channel.
Leaving the car to walk to the starting line I tell Gloria "that is not the last song I want to hear." She calls me back to the car for another song she knows I like.

One Republic I did it all
I, I gave it all
I, I gave it all
I owned every second that this world could give
With every bruised bone, I swear I lived
Hope that you spend your days, but they all add up
And when the sun goes down, I hope you drank of your cup

I line up for my race feeling cold and just trying to finish today. The race director has mentioned the participants may run faster in this race because of who is coming. The two fastest Canadian men and the second fastest woman marathoner`s are taking part today. As if this is going to make me run faster I think to myself. These runners will only show myself and my family the huge gap between an elite athlete and myself.
An elite Canadian runner who is not taking part is Lanni Marchant.
She is Canada`s fastest woman marathon runner ever. She is in serious training trying to qualify for the Rio Olympics 2016. I am also hoping to break some huge news regarding Lanni at a later date.

Compared to most the race is uneventful for me. At the 16 km mark a woman yells "I love your camou" At the 17km mark I started figuring out how much time I had left to run I multiplied average time by miles instead of kilometers, same as Ottawa. I think I should shelve math when I run for I seem to always calculate wrong.
18 km mark my stomach is acting up and I am so grateful for this run being a half and not a full marathon. Although the distance is double the difficulty and the toll a full marathon takes on my body is far greater.  

I mistakenly thought March 1 was the "ides of march" the date in which Julius Caesar was assassinated on. I found out that it is March 15. Today turned out to be an "ides of march "day for me.
Most of the humour from this blog has came from my daughters honest opinion of my race results. Today while driving home Isabella did not feel well and closed her eyes most of the way. In her defence Gloria saw Reid Coolsaet Canadian Olympian, and fastest men`s marathoner finish this race in 1 hour and 3 minutes.
Imagine my surprise when Gloria (loving wife of 17+ years) on the drive home turned to me and remarked  "you are usually closer to the front of the race than you were today." In my defence I finished in 1 hour 40 minutes which is 1 minute faster than I ran this race two years ago. I was five minutes under a Boston Marathon Qualifying time. I finished 335 out of 4 500 runners. Have I set the bar to high?  Isabella`s comments were one thing, but now even Gloria.
"Et tu Gloria et tu?

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