Sunday, November 15, 2009

My Ellen to Mer's Portia: run, wine, food, and friends!

I didn't think we looked like a couple, but then again we DO live in California. And we were wine tasting. Not that there's anything wrong with that!

Let me back up, before I get too ahead of myself.

I knew it would be painful. My lungs would burn, my legs would ache, and the pace would be slow. Remember all that stuff this past year about 'my fast being your slow and your fast is my slow and sometimes my slow is better than your fast but its all hogwash because in the end we're all running and should be happy to be out there...'

Remember that?

Well, I can safely say that my current fast wouldn't even keep up with my old slow. So this is my new norm and I'm working towards a faster fast, but first I must build on my current slow.

Now - repeat 5X fast.

But misery loves company. And though that sounds awful, I can safely say that my FIRST run since Ironman Hawaii was exponentially better because of Meredith and Soren.

We had agreed to a play-date. Sure, Nathaniel and I only have Tabbitha and Anabelle, but that doesn't mean we can't host our friends and their kids. Plus, Nathaniel had yet to meet 12-week-old Soren and after seeing him interacting with our niece, Adelyn, in Hawaii - I knew he was a softie at heart.
First order of business was the run. Nathaniel bid us farewell as Meredith, Soren, and myself set out on the "flattest" route I could think of. Flat - I should say) after climbing and subsequently descending the first and second big hill off the Carlsbad coast. I can personally assure you that reaching your max LT is possible while chugging along at 12 min per mile pace.

But we prevailed, we survived, and with little whining or crying on my part. For the record, Soren was a great running partner. As the token male he didn't openly pee or make farting jokes, which was a major change from the boys I used to run with in high school and college. There may have been a poopy diaper, but in all honesty, with the hills (especially on the way back), that could have been any one of us. (just kidding).

Later, the three of us set out for Wine Tasting. As we were walking out the door, Nathaniel inquired as to who was driving. I had hoped that he would come with us, but he didn't want to interrupt girl-time, and figured he could get some studying done while we were gone.

"Mer is. She has to!" I replied without thinking.

Both Nate and Meredith took this to mean that I would get completely wasted on my wine samples, but I was referring to Soren's car seat. Oh well - lost in translation, I guess. The tables were turned when I ended up driving Mer's car back. Though I haven't been working out in my off-season, I can safely say that my wine tolerance is much better than normal.

Which Creek Winery was great - plenty of samples and great camaraderie all around. At one point, Meredith asked a couple standing next to us if they would take our picture. They looked at each other, giggled, and then one agreed. She was very careful to include Soren in the shot and then commented, "Oh - you guys are so cute!"

Perhaps it was the wine, or the fact that I love hanging out with friends; but I didn't think anything of it.

Only when Mer turned to me and whispered, "Do you think they think we're a couple...?" that the realization dawned on me.

The giggles. The looks. The 'oh - you're so cute!' comment.

Yep - they thought we were a couple.

I couldn't help myself, really. I started laughing, really really loudly. And that in turn attracted the attention of nearly half the tasters assembled (which was plenty at 5 pm on a Saturday night).

Now, a smart, non-wine-sampling-person would have left it at that.

Clearly, I am not one of the above.

"Just so you know, ha ha, we're [gesturing between Meredith and myself] NOT a couple!" I tried to get out, between fits of laughter.

Classy, yes. Especially in my jean jacket and flip flops holding my mostly-empty wine glass.

If my laughter hadn't gotten the attention of ever patron in the room, my comment certainly did. Jen and Kelly (yes, I know them by name and no, I don't think there's anything wrong with that) who were pouring samples just shook their heads and one said, "No comment."

We were officially the token lesbian couple at Witch Creek Winery that night.

I think I made it worse when I explained, "We're married! Honestly" And, as though to prove my point, I flashed my wedding band. I suppose my error in not mentioning Nathaniel. Or Meredith's Dave. Hindsight is 20-20.

But we really did have a great time and I'm looking forward to our next sampling foray to Witch Creek.

I knew that I would have to drive when Meredith exclaimed, "I want to do Vineman 70.3 next year!" A sober person would not make a comment like that, especially after just having a baby. So she gave me her keys and we safely made our way back to my place.

Beef stir-fry was on the menu for dinner, and it was fun cooking and chatting. Soren was awake and I wondered what it would be like for Nathaniel and myself to become parents. It seems that so many of my friends, are either pregnant or new parents. And while it seems exciting and wonderful, I don't think we're quite ready.

There are so many responsibilities involved, and half the time I feel like a kid myself. I know that my life would undeniably change for the better - but we're just not ready to take that leap (yet!). Plus, we've got the added element of Nathaniel's impending deployments; there are so many things he would miss. Then again - I don't know of anyone who IS 100% ready to be a parent.

In the meantime, I'll get my baby fix by hanging out with Soren and playing with Adelyn over Christmas. They are both adorable - beyond words. But at the first sign of a poopy diaper, I get to give 'em back.

The night ended when Mer - who had comsumed 4 HUGE glasses of water and a diet coke to boot - left for home and it was only me and Nate. The House Monsters were let out of the bedroom (Anabelle was hiding anyway. I just don't want my 19-pound cat lunging at a baby half her weight), and Nathaniel and I enjoyed the rest of the evening in our clean house.
Not that it was gross or anything - but nothing brings out the vacuum cleaner like the promise of guests. I watched a little 'Frasier' while he napped on the couch and the fireplace flickered in the background. I realized my legs were a little sore, the calves a little tight. I couldn't help but smile - my first run since Ironman.

I can't wait to do it again.


Jennifer Harrison said...

SO glad you are having some fun!!!! AS You should! YAY

cherelli said...

That sounds like a mighty fine way to spend a day....

Charisa said...

Haha - awesome on your new couple relationship! :)

TriGirl Kate O said...

Yes yes yes to vineman next year. I hope she talked you into it too!

Mama Simmons said...

For the record, I don't think *anyone* is ever really ready to become a parent. ;)
Glad you had a fun day!

Jennifer Yake Neuschwander said...

I am laughing out loud thinking of people mistaking you and Mer as a couple. Sooo funny.

Anonymous said...

Well you two do make a cute couple!

kerrie said...

i agree with greg, you DO look like a very *cute* couple!! how fun! i'm so glad that you are thoroughly enjoying the off season. runs are so much fun this time of year when there is no agenda.

ADC said...

I am so glad you enjoyed your first post-ironman run.
Babies talk!! uh-uh :)))

Nicole said...

That so sounds like something I would say!! ;)

My nephew's name is Soren, and that is the first time I've heard of someone else being named that! I'm glad you are enjoying your post ironman runs!

Beth said...

Marit!! After reading your last two posts I have been inspired to make my off season just as fun as yours! :) So thanks! :) Glad you are having such a great time. And love the picture of the House Monster. Wow, she really is a big cat. ;)

Shan said...

LOVE IT! Next time I wanna be there!! We'll go wine tasting when you come up for Vineman for sure!

Mer! said...

We *do* make a cute couple!! Marit, it was the BEST day ever!! Had such a great and Nate will make great parents someday--but for now....enjoy every moment of being together and racing and traveling!!! guys have the right idea!!

Waiting to hear back from Dave about his residency graduation before I pull the trigger on Vineman =0

EEK! See you at 2:00 for our run!!!!