When I'd finally sit down on the computer, it was with mediocre wifi, so more often than not I'd resort to my smart phone.
The trip as a whole was fantastic! I set out to try and connect with as many people as possible in hopes of finding a job in this industry that could keep me in the US or somewhere cool abroad, and I left with numerous promising leads.
It was fabulous to see new and old faces, and spend some time helping out at the expo and for the first time, getting involved in the keiki (kid's) race before Ironman.
The Saturday right after I arrived I found out there was an organized race of the full swim course and jumped in last minute with a friend which was amazing because it felt like I was racing again but then emerged to find fruit and bagels waiting at the King Kam beach restaurant.
Every day I'd run and/or swim, mostly solo but got in a solid 11 miler with Hillary (www.smashfestqueen.com) all along Alii, and another short one with Beth before finally leaving the Island- got to meet little Wynne too :) The swim highlights were: obviously the "race", finding the Smash girls mid-sea and joining them for the remainder, and the last dip from the Pier getting to swim out to the 1.2 bouey with Chrissie Wellington, and the Grangers.
For the majority of the trip I shared a condo with Holly, SOAS' Steph, and her sister Andrea- it was awesome spending time with these great women! The night before last, Jen Barber let me crash with her before slumming it back down to Uncle Billy's "hotel" and we had a great dinner and a failed attempt to find late night local Big Island ice cream despite miles of walking in effort.
I also had two long lunches with some of the Mexican athletes and it was cool to hear of their journey to Kona and how/where they train back home.
The rest of the sun and fun is all in pics....
One of the first swims in my new Betty suit (www.bettydesigns.com)
cheering along the run course!!
Shiono Sushi- top notch!!
From Hawaii, I was set to travel back a whole 17.5 hours to Texas with stops in Seattle and Dallas. The Ebola scare in Dallas coupled with the agony of being sleep deprived in airports felt enough to warrant getting off in Seattle and stay with my good friend Sam a few days. I'd only passed through Seattle in 2007 en route to Portland for Nationals, so never explored any of it.
Aside from the gloomy weather, the people, abundant culture, fantastic food, and general love/support for outdoor activities made me think I could totally live there! We enjoyed walks to some amazing coffee, cocktails at the chic Edge Water Hotel, a swim in Mercer Island, and a fabulous dinner at Anthony's Home Port in Kirkland.
Icing on the cake was getting to play original Nintendo and meeting Sam's horrendously cute rescue dog, Mimi.