Sunday, July 28, 2013

Ragnar Run - Meeting the Team

Our Team Shirt - a shout out to Back to the Future

Race Report: Part Two

I always believe it is better to be early than on time, to be on time and never late, and better late than never. Which translates into "Eleanore is always way to early".

I got to Tahoe around 2:30 pm the day before the race, and the first of our team to arrive at the campsites. Other runners had beat me to the site, however I still had first choice spots, to ensure we did not get a spot anywhere near the trash, main walkways, or port-o-pottys. Ragnar had reserved a parking lot to use as a campsite, and the edges of the lot had pine trees and scrub, so if your team was lucky, you could get a thin slice of nature on one side of the site. I pitched a tent (lolz) and made friends with our neighbors, Team Hot Pink RILF. They shared their beers and we played cards, hiding from a rain squall that quickly rolled in and rolled out. I also made one enemy, some bald guy and his woman, who interrogated me for reserving the spot. He got on his mobile phone and attempted to call some Ragnar person. I nicely told him if her were smart, he would do what I was doing, and pop a squat before his team arrived. I never saw him again.

Our team began arriving around 5:00 pm, from various parts of the country. Two members, S and J, had flown in from Florida. Another two members (C and H) had arrived from Wisconsin, via the California Zephyr (one of the most famous Amtrak train that I had the pleasure of taking across country in 2001).   The last four (R, L, C, & S2) were all from Nevada, arriving separately by plane and car, flying in from Las Vegas and driving in from Reno.

The small rain squall had everyone anxious to set up camp and get dinner cooked without delay. R, our team leader, had done four months of careful planning, which included a hot, home-cooked chicken, veggie and rice meal for our first get-to-know-you dinner. Being a relay run, this would be the only time the whole team would be able to eat together, and, as runners, all of our diets and colons functioned delicately and differently. Any runner can tell you that eating too close to a run can cause cramps, or certain foods can cause a very different type of "runs". In addition, some runners (like myself) have lucky foods. (My lucky foods include Coke, Almond Snickers, and pizza. No one ever said lucky foods were health foods.) Over the passing of the sriracha, we all discussed how we loved the team tee-shirt, and our worries about possible bears roaming around the camp at night, and how registration started at 9:00 am in the morning. 

We also had to decorate the campsite. Our team name was Team Uter Zorker, named after the fat German kid on The Simpsons who famously stated "Do not make me run - I am full of chocolate!" L, who teaches elementary school kids, had a knack for crafts, and created a whole display that included German and USA flags, a solar powered spinning flag pole, 3 hours of non-stop polka music, and free chocolate in a "Please take one" bucket. 

I think I am on the right team!

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