John's Adventures

Hello! I'm John Grayson and I hope you enjoy reading of my adventures as much as I enjoy participating in them. I am one of those technology professionals whose interests lie outside of technology. Instead of checking out techie stuff, I check out history, nature, sports, and alcohol. Have Fun!

Saturday, June 18, 2005


A Day at the Races

We woke up Saturday morning to weather that I expected: cool temperatures, clouds, and rain. This was the weather that JimmyG had hoped for during the race. He was awake a couple hours earlier then me, but he had to run The Mayor's Midnight Sun Marathon and I did not.

After breakfast I looked up the route for the race on-line so that Julie and I could go yell at him if he passed by. We arrived at our first vantage point very early. The people who were competing with hopes of actually winning hadn't even passed by yet. They came and went, and still JimmyG was nowhere to be seen. It might have been 45 minutes later that JimmyG ran by. Julie was so bored by the time he came that she forgot to take his picture.

We then drove over to another vantage point. This one was swarming with mosquitoes. Thankfully, I didn't spend much time here. After a few minutes JimmyG ran by, and I managed to take a picture - Julie didn't have her camera this time.

We then drove over to the finish line area to wait for him to catch up to us again. Right before the finish line is a fairly big hill. Most of the runners said it would be a tough hill to run up after a short race, but this was right about the 26 mile mark of a race that goes 26.2 miles. It took longer then expected for JimmyG to get to the finish line, but he finally made it. He clocked in at 4 hours and 21 minutes. He was the first finisher of the Nations Capital Chapter of the Leukemia Team in Training group. Understandable, he looked like he'd been hit by a truck.

We dropped JimmyG off at his hotel to rest while we wandered around Anchorage for the day. I wanted to stop by REI to rent a camp stove after United Airlines took offense to the one I had packed (I've since checked the TSA web site and you can travel with these if you leave the gas can at home, I left the gas at home). I also wanted to stop by the public lands building, and if time allowed, check out the Northern Lights show.

REI was a snap and we were off to the public lands building. We watched a few short videos about Alaska, and checked out their small museum. I then printed off a contour map for the hike we would be taking in a few days. We then walked a couple blocks to the arts center for the Northern Lights show. It turned out to be a movie that briefly discussed the science behind it, and then a lot of film was consumed with footage of it from points in the vicinity of Anchorage. Pretty cool to watch. Made me with I was there at a time of year that it actually gets dark enough to see the Northern Lights.

We now met up with JimmyG and the other runners for the post race party. Again, this was free dinner, but it had an expensive cash bar (beer cost $4, might as well be in DC or Baltimore). After dinner, a group of us went for a bar crawl. We caught sunset at about 11:50 from a rooftop bar, and then finished drinking at about 1 AM.
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