Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Color Run

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly.

Did the Color run in Philly with my friend Molly today, and the whole experience was pretty crazy.

The Good:
The Philly Color Run was the biggest color run ever! 23,000 people, completely sold out, just insane. And it was the 3rd largest 5k in America. There was awesome music, and there was just amazing energy in the air. It wasn't timed and there was no pressure to actually run, it was just all about having as much fun as possible. But even though there was no pressure to run, the adrenaline was pumping, and carried me through the whole thing (on about 2.5 hrs of sleep - I'll explain that later). The city was awesome, the route was awesome. We started and ended at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The finish line was actually at the bottom of the Rocky Stairs. The color stations were kind of hysterical. People were dancing around like crazy, and some of the outfits people wore... well... it took guts! And the color festival at the end of the race was insane. We were just floating the whole time we were there. What was also great was that I ran the race with Molly, one of my former students. She and I have become friends over the years (a common love of volleyball makes for good friends!) and she also loves Emma and Izzy, and is a great babysitter! She's the one who told me about the race and got me to sign up, and it was cool to run with her on her FIRST EVER 5K. She was totally nervous and didn't think she'd be able to run the whole thing, but she killed it. I also ran into 3 other former students - it's a small world!

The Bad:
Purple boogers after the race. Having to scrub the skin off of my body to get the color off. Blue teeth. Color in the eyes. Molly's bleach blond hair being died pink and purple, despite several shampooings.  Also, the packet pick up. The pre-race info was only available 9 days before the race, and that's when we discovered that packet pick up would only be open until 3 pm on Saturday. Every race I've done or heard of, has packet pickup open until the EVENING before the race. So, we had just planned to get to Philly by late afternoon. Because the information was only available last week, we just couldn't make it work to get our packets in time (Molly worked early in the day, and Mike and I were coming back from Inner Harbor - I'll post more about that later!). Which meant that we had to get up at 4am on Sunday morning to get dressed, ready, and get our packets that morning. After the fact we saw that we probably could have come about a half hour later than we did, and still avoided most of the lines. But it was definitely worth it to get up and over there as early as we did, because as I already mentioned, we were fighting a crowd of 23,000 people. So, I guess in general it was just disappointing that we couldn't get the information sooner, and had the hassle of packet pick up in the morning.

The Ugly:
The hotel. We stayed at the Best Western Center City Hotel. Location-wise, it was perfect. We literally only had to walk across  the street and through a baseball field to get to the party. Less than five minutes walking. However, when we walked into the lobby to check in, it was hot. And when we got into the elevator, it was hotter. And when we got to our room on the third floor (the top floor) it was hot, hot, hot. AC was on, but it wasn't able to keep up with the heat. Talking to other people at the hotel, we heard that it was a problem in all the rooms, and so we didn't bother to say anything to the hotel people. We just kind of sucked it up, and decided it was definitely worth the heat for the convenience of the location. So, other than the AC not working, the room was decent. No frills, but clean with comfortable beds. So, knowing that we had to get up at 4am, we were trying to get to sleep early.

Unfortunately the heat made that pretty difficult, so by 11 we were both still tossing and turning. Around 11:15, I happened to toss, and look up to see a pretty large looking bug. I was about 99% sure it was a cockroach, but was trying not to freak out. So I quickly and quietly got out of bed, and walked as far away from that roach as possible, over by Molly's bed. I didn't take my eyes off that sucker, and when it started moving (it was high up on the wall on my side of the room) I said, "Molly, I don't want to alarm you, but there's a bug." Not thinking much, she rolled over and said "what?" So I pointed it out to her, and she spent a couple minutes trying to convince me it was a moth. When it started crawling towards us, we both finally confirmed that yes, it was indeed a massive cockroach (about 3 inches long and fat). At that point, we both screamed like school girls, and Molly immediately called down to the front desk. They said they were sending their security guy. We contemplated trying to trap it under a cup, or smashing it with a shoe, but it was high up on the wall and I wasn't confident I could reach it without knocking it down onto myself. By this time, the cockroach flew (DID YOU KNOW COCKROACHES CAN FLY? I DID NOT KNOW THIS.) over onto my headboard, climbed down underneath it, and disappeared somewhere by the head of my bed after I tried whacking it with my shoe a couple times.

That's when I told Molly to pack her stuff up, because there was no way we were staying in that room. And I was getting pissed, because WHERE WAS THE SECURITY GUY? It had been AT LEAST 3 minutes since we'd called, and I expected him to come running up to our room with his Raid cans blazing, a pistol in his holster just in case things got out of hand.  We finally just turned on the light to get our stuff together, and that's when I saw that little bugger right next to my bed. I froze, and started yelling at Molly to get me a shoe. She gets me the shoe, and after whacking it twice I realize that DUH I'm not gonna kill a cockroach with a shoe, so I just trapped it under the shoe, had Molly get me a cup, and then trapped it under the cup. And then for good measure we put the trash can on top of the cup.

Ew. Finally the security guy came and was pretty nonchalant about our situation, so he clearly did not understand just how dire it was. I mean, there was a cockroach. Under a cup. Under a trash can. IN. OUR. ROOM.  Why wasn't he more concerned about this!?! But when he lifted up that trashcan even HE jumped a little, and was surprised at just how big it was. He lifted up the cup and squished it with his foot (I had knocked it onto its back with the shoe, so it's soft underbelly was showing). Then he grabbed a little toilet paper, picked it up, squished it some more WITH HIS HAND (ew) and threw it in the trash. And then he walked a little further into the room, and asked why we didn't have the AC on. Long story short - he got us a new room on the second floor where SHOCKINGLY the AC was working just fine. By the time we got settled in our new room it was midnight. And we were both wide awake. But the working AC did make it easier to relax, so I did eventually fall asleep. Problem was that I kept having this dream where I woke up in my hotel bed, and the walls were crawling with hundreds of cockroaches. Then I'd jolt awake, spend several minutes scanning the walls and ceiling before I could lay back down, and then wait to drift off to sleep again. So, that's why I only had about 2.5 hours of sleep before having to get up at 4 to get ready for packet pick up.

 Three colors in: Pink, Blue, and Yellow.
 The Color Festival

 Crazy Dirty

This is what I look like when I'm loading up to jump again, and trying not to swallow large amounts of colored cornstarch, and trying to actually breath, all at the same time. Hot, I know. Actually, this is probably the most awkward photo of me, ever. EVER.

But despite all the craziness, the color run was a blast, and I hope I can do it next year!! In fact, this morning Molly and I were even thanking that little (enormous) cockroach, because without we wouldn't have gotten a new room with AC!