Mountains, running, outdoors, dogs, travel, and California.
Sunset over Alcatraz. It’s good to be home.
I saw a bunch of monkeys on this mountain, and learned Brazil has the largest urban rainforest in the world.
From the balcony of where I was staying in Rio you could look out over Copacabana on one side, and this favela on the other. Even the income disparity in San Francisco did not prepare me to see luxury homes with this level of poverty all around them. This particular favela has been undergoing rapid gentrification, the rumor is David Beckham bought one of the houses pictured here with a pool for the view. Now slum houses are going for hundreds of thousands of dollars. At night I could hear dogs fighting in the favela, it was pretty spooky. Also that mountain off to the right is Corcovado, with the giant Jesus statue.
Pretty killer view of Copacabana from my window. I sat on the beach reading Caitlin Doughty’s latest book about death, while drinking out of a coconut. At night, against advice not to, I strolled around to find live Bossa Nova and Samba. In spite of how beautiful Rio is, it’s the most dangerous it’s ever been right now. Militarized police were deployed in July to deal with the drug cartels, and they shot and killed a tourist the day before I got there.
I spent a few weeks clearing my head in South America. I loved it and hope to go back soon, but dang I need to learn Spanish. This is a view of Rio from that giant Jesus statue.
Today I got a once in a lifetime whale show. I had the morning to spend in Monterey and had heard there were recent orca sightings (pretty unusual here) and thought I'd take my chances. We got to watch two pods of orcas have a showdown with five humpback whales. There were a lot of angry whale noises, lots of tail slapping, and a bunch of breaching. One swam right under our boat. Also whale breath, it's quite bad. 🐋
Today was my first marathon, barely over a year from when I started running. 4699 other 🦇 💩 crazy people boarded a bus at 3am down the Pacific Coast Highway, to spend all day running back up it again. The Bixby Bridge comes just after Hurricane Point, the biggest hill on the course, naturally there are terrifying war drums before you start your climb. In total the course has about 2000' of gains which is less than some trail half marathons I've done, but the road miles were way harder on my feet.
I wrote 261 on my arm, Katherine Switzer's number when she became the first registered woman to finish the Boston Marathon, and her number again this year when she repeated the race two weeks ago on her 50th anniversary. Every time I thought I was suffering I looked at my arm and was grateful to be able to participate, and not have some angry man trying to chase me off the course.