===>tired & whooped & somewhat victorious

When they called it the Mt. Tom Road to the Pogue race, I thought it was an interesting name. Hmm..what's a pogue? I asked. (It's a pond). When they said it was a "challenging but beautiful" course, I chose to emphasize the scenery aspect. Perfect. Who doesn't love beautiful surroundings?

Translation====> a 10k where you run up a mountain (ohhhhh! MOUNT Tom) and back down. A 10k that is challenging for even seasoned runners.

But, after some major qualms, I did it! It wasn't pretty but I did it. And (my only goal besides finishing) I wasn't the very last person. I was the 5th to the last person, but still. Definitely NOT last. Did I walk? Yes, on many of the steep inclines. Still, I ended up with a 12 minute pace. {Greg was a rock star! He kept a just over 9 minute pace & ran the whole thing.}

I had a minor panic attack in the parking lot before the race where I suddenly decided it was much more imperative for me to stay with the kids.

But then Lauren said: No, go do it, Mom! Do it for Dad!
Maddy said: Do it, Mom! Do it for yourself!
Sam said: Yeah! Do it for the dog! (Huh? Unsure what the connection between my running and our potential dog is???)
They were very encouraging and I didn't want to let them down. But you know what really made me keep going?

You. Or rather, knowing that I had blogged about it, had posted some rather out-on-a-limb rhetoric about going outside my comfort zone, blah, blah, blah. I was too embarrassed to come back home and say "oh yeah, about that. didn't end up doing it after all. oh well!" So thanks for being my invisible motivator. Let's hear it for accountability!

By the way, the scenery really was stunning: woods and meadows and, of course, the pogue. The outlook at the summit was breathtaking--sweeping views of Woodstock and the surrounding countryside. They had a bagpiper serenading us as we ran around the pond, a drum group cheering us on halfway through, & a fantastic breakfast awaiting us at the finish. Hindsight is so idyllic, isn't it?

* * *
Speaking of idyllic, Woodstock is such a great town. We had driven through but never stayed there. I felt like I was in Gilmore Girl's Stars Hollow, what with...

the gazebo outside our Bates-motel-style lodgings,

the quaint town announcement board

{there's our race announcement. And the oboe concert!},

the cute town center,

and (my favorite) the quirky signs.
What do you think made the pavement
so scarified?