I'll start this blog quoting from my facebook timeline where I was excited to post on Sunday afternoon that I ..."successfully completed 3 full marathons, 1 half and a horse trial in the last 22 days." This blog had a quick blurb on the first marathon and the last post covered the horse trial and the half marathon, so moving ahead.
We're in the final stages of getting our Annual Report completed, so there were photo shoots and editing sessions and graphic design and all kinds of fun stuff to add to the usual work week. I like this picture of Eric and me.
October 19th, I woke up very early and drove to Dover, DE. I've never been there before. I was there to run the Monster Mash marathon, named in honor of "Miles the Monster" who guards the Dover Downs Speedway. The first mile was around the speedway, the rest out on the roads of Dover.
I ran alone pretty much the whole way as there were fewer than 400 participants total and only 150 of those running the full marathon. But the race was well supported, the course was nicely flat and the weather was conducive to running (although for me, way too cold to really appreciate). I was able to finish nicely, following my now traditional (post-AS diagnosis) strategy of slowly running the first half and essentially walking the second half. I then headed off to Fair Hill, where things didn't go as smoothly. None of my boys were able to successfully complete xc day. Sally had a fall (minor concussion for her and Taz is well) as did Caitlin (no injuries for her or for Remi). Kate and Cole retired when it was clear they weren't having a good day. Sinead Halpin also had a fall and has blogged about it Sinead's Fair Hill Blog. So altogether a rough day. There was, as always plenty of coverage in Eventing Nation and the full scores are here http://www.evententries.com/livescoring/15424.html. It was great to see Jan Bynny win the CCI*** and one of the great eventing Connemaras win the CCI**. The latter became even more poignant when I heard later that week that Ard Celtic Art had passed away http://eventingnation.com/home/rip-ardceltic-art.html.
Then off to SMDM in Baltimore where there were 3 very nice dinners. Henry wine at the Prime Rib and then dinner with restaurant wine at Wit and Wisdom (the Four Seasons restaurant) with Jen Goldsack and Chris McLaughlin and her fiance Cory (it was great to spend some time with them), and finally on Tuesday - my Baltimore favorite Charleston. SMDM was a great meeting, with lots of opportunities to catch up with colleagues, see great work, and learn new stuff.
Once SMDM wrapped up, after a couple of meetings with other folks in the area, I spent some time volunteering at the Novice and Training 3 Day Event at Waredaca. I was bit check and dressage steward and then Phase A starter. As always, it was great to see everyone and to be a part of the long format. Caitlin was planning a regroup with Remi at Galway at this point, so I was trying to help a little with fundraising ideas too and got my plans all arranged to do some volunteering and be able to help Caitlin since Boyd wasn't going to be there (then of course, Boyd broke his arm and we were wondering if he might reroute) - more on this in a moment.
Back to my schedule, after enjoying the kind hospitality of my friend Katherine Rizzo, I got up earlier on Saturday morning than I had needed to since the Monster Mash and headed to BWI to catch a flight (via ORD) to St. Louis. Not for the World Series, tempting as it would be, but to run the Rock 'n' Roll St. Louis Marathon. I vegged on Saturday afternoon, then got up Sunday and walked to the start line. It was another cold (but beautiful) morning, and another good marathon. I can't push much, but I did finish 17 minutes faster than I had finished the Monster Mash. When I checked my messages after the marathon, I heard from Jenna that Remi had not travelled well and Caitlin had made the decision to bring him home from Kentucky rather than going on to Galway. As always, Caitlin put her horse's interest first, which is one of many reasons I am proud to be part of the Silliman Eventing Team http://eventingnation.com/home/remington-xxv-withdrawn-from-galway-downs-cci3.html. Over the same weekend, team USA was putting in a great showing at Pau, with Phillip Dutton and Mr. Medicott finishing 4th and Clark Montgomery and Universe 10th. I think it has been a while since we've had 2 americans in the top ten at a big international event. http://eventingnation.com/home/top-10-memorable-moments-from-pau-final-press-conference.html. Closer to home, Cyndi sent some great video clips of Jordan and Keebler schooling xc and looking fabulous and Caitlin had her first ride on Astro and reports that he is both "so sweet" and "really smart". Looking forward to his progress. So all kinds of good news and bad news and happenings and memories crammed into 8 days. Today I'm back at work, and this looks like a pretty normal week, with no running plans for the weekend as I start the taper and will be volunteering at Galway and visiting my dad.