In an effort to minimize the amount of vacation time Don took for this trip, we left after he came home from work on Tuesday, July 3rd. It is a nine hour drive to Columbus (with a stop for dinner and other breaks). That meant arriving at my aunt and uncle's house at 2 AM for an 8 AM race. Ouch!
Don and I took turns driving. Unfortunately we did not also take turns napping as I stayed awake the whole time. Our new driver, Ashley, had troubles sleeping haunted by images of the movies her Drivers Ed teacher made her class watch. As she is not allowed to drive between the hours of 11 AM and 6 AM, she did not take a driving shift. That and she has only been driving about a week and they go FAST on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
Back to the race.
Cousins Laura and Allie, Jordan, Don, and I, and a couple of their friends did a gentle jog to the start line 8/10 of a mile from the house. A 10-minute mile pace was a gentle jog for all but Laura, Don, and I. We caught up to them just before the race and snapped the annual group photo. We bookend the picture.
Looking at the results, there were 333 runners. That is a cool number! Laura picked up bibs for nine of us. Somehow we managed to only mix up two bibs -- hers and Jordans. I took bib number 2525 because I thought it sounded cool. Don grabbed 2524 because it was the only one left.
The Bexley 5K is super flat. It weaves through the section of Bexley starting with Jeffrey Mansion and past the Governor's Mansion (two different big homes). I'm sure my cousins could point out other highlights, such as where their friends lived.
It was 77 degrees at the race with a whopping 91% humidity. You just wanted to tell the skies to get up to 100% humidity and rain already. As a result I was about a minute a mile slower than usual, and I managed to legitimately finish before Don. At a larger or longer race, I might have walked with him, but I really just wanted to finish. They had two water stops (sounds like they added the second because of the weather conditions). The finish line had Popsicle sticks, in addition to bananas and water.
Had Don been a year older, he would have placed and won a water bottle. Alas, others were faster in his age category. Don was much happier unicycling later.
Laura slowed down to walk with her friend and her six-year old son. We waited for Laura in order to take our finish line photo.
The race cost $30, not bad for a 5K. What was pretty awesome was that it included a gift card for a free soup or salad from Brassica, a new local restaurant, and a coupon for a classic sub from the local Jimmy John's -- together about an $18 value. This might have been the best race packet ever.
I'd love to say we got a lot more sleep on the rest of the weekend, but that wasn't the case. At 10 PM that night we saw fireworks. Thursday night I watched Heidi play volleyball at 9:30 PM. Friday night we saw "Frankenstein" at Schiller Park in German Village. Saturday night was Allie and Doug's wedding -- remember, the real reason for going to Ohio that weekend. I can always sleep in New Jersey.