Sunday, June 03, 2007

Time to catch up!

Well, folks, it's been a while, but I'm back now. I was in Saskatoon for a conference.

Here's me by the bridge close to campus.

I drove out from Calgary with my friend, Christine, who's a grad student in Linguistics and was also giving a paper. It was a total girls' road trip and we had a blast. It was a long drive (about 8 hours each way, once you factor in a few breaks along the way), and it was nice to have the company.

I presented a paper that's related to my thesis studies, met a few people and, best of all, got to catch up with a few classmates.

Last Monday there was a banquet, which I attended with my supervisor, Tim, along with his other two PhD students, Steamer and Amy. Here's a picture of us all at the banquet.

I came home on Tuesday and spent the rest of the week catching up. I returned to work after my month-long academic leave, too. I had to wrap my head around things I had completely forgotten about for those four weeks and it felt like pulling teeth! I like my job, but it was challenging to remember all those little things after that long!

I've started on a training program for the half-marathon in July. So far, so good. Kevin, the new trainer has me doing intervals for my speed work. I've decided that I love intervals, though I think they can lull you into a false sense of accomplishment. He has me going faster than I've ever gone before... but only for short bursts of 5 minutes at a time. Of course, there's no possible way to sustain that pace on anything longer than a sprint to a bus stop, but it does make you feel like a superhero for that very limited time.

And speaking of training, today I was a co-pilot with my room mate, Gord, on a trip to a nearby town called Cochrane. He wanted to mark a course for a long bike ride, using my Garmin ETrex hand held device that my brother gave me for Christmas. So, he drove and I monitored the Garmin.

Sorry... I should elaborate on that last line... He pulled his Alfa Romeo GTV6 out of storage for a spring run. And that's what we drove to Cochrane.

Here's a snap of me by the car:

Before we went to Cochrane, we took a spin by my friend, Ken's, since he was dying to see the car. Here are the boys at Ken's house:

Then we said good-bye to Ken and hit the road. While we were in Cochrane, we took part in a local ritual... going for ice cream. It's just what you do in Cochrane, because they have good ice cream there.

I had watermelon lime swirl and black cherry:

And Gord had Columbian coffee and blueberry:

We figured out that his cycling route is about 68 km. He was a bit disappointed, as he's logged longer distances on his bike computer. But this route, if he does it, includes a couple of killer hills that I wouldn't wish on anyone.

Mind you, if you lived in Cochrane, you'd almost need to train on that hill to work off all the ice cream you'd be eating! Oy vey.

In any case, it's been busy... and fun!


Backofpack said...

Love all the pictures! Back to work, travel and trips for ice cream - what a deal!

Also - I figured I could tell about the ice/bra thing because it was about me, not about the others...

Turtle Guy said...

Wow! Travel, speaking engagements, time with friends, a road trip AND ice cream.

Life certainly is full and rich.

Robb said...

Crazy and all those zany friends of yours. Just all out crazy.

Great to see things are going well - good luck with that 1/2 plan!

ipodmomma said...

great pics! so nice to see you in a variety of outings...

watermelon lime swirl... now that's a flavour!

robtherunner said...

Great pics, Sarah! The short bursts of speed should make your normal training pace feel much easier. That is what I always liked about the speed sessions. I am sure you will do great.

Misty said...

Glad you were able to have a little fun after the grueling 28 day writing spree. Quite the adventures, thanks for sharing! Great photo shots too!

Icecream really is that one treat you just can't give up. A sinful treat worth working off.