So I just wanted to start my post my saying what a lovely guy Wes is! Very surreal meeting a fellow blogger, particularly one that lives such a distance away... and Mum I quite forgot to send on your best wishes to him so hopefully when I see him again later in the week I can do that!
OK so before I get on to Wes let me tell you about my trip thus far.....
Started off great - with a *free* upgrade to British Airways world traveller plus! We were going to buy the upgrade but I dropped the subtle about my Auntie being crew (thanks Auntie A!)... and low and behold when we boarded found we had been booted up a class! Fabulous start!
Having finally arrived at Atlanta airport then came the fun of meeting half dozen large bags, getting through customs only to leave the bags behind to get to the other luggage collection point as we passed through security again. I have to say I just don't get that logic! If only the bags would appear at the other end as swifty as they did first time round too.... humm... still a bit of a wait later we loaded the two trollies and headed for the Hertz bus, where a rather nice gentleman offered a hand loading them on the bus!!! Take what you can get after such a long flight is what I say! Next came the chevy Trailblazer - talk about BIG.... well it did feel big compared to Betty my A4 estate! Finally made it to W suites in one piece around 6:30pm (11:30pm UK time).... didn't bother to unpack other then the basics! Even managed to head out for some food a bit later on, although frankly nearly fell asleep in it!
The main excitement of the next day was me driving.... particularly when I got a little curious about all those buttons in the rear-view mirror...... note to self... do not press the one that looks like an emergency button.... yes it was an emergency button and yes the car did dial out!! OMG! Like a voice came over all the speakers asking me if there was an emergency in the vehicle!! LOL!!.... I just rather embarrassingly told the guy that I'd pressed the wrong button! Oh dear!!
Anyhow, Monday came and it was time to discover the silver comet trail that Wes mentions an awful lot in his posts... so headed down there just after the rush to discover the bike rental place wasn't open till 10am! Oh, there was me there just after 9.... humm... so having observed that most people were dressed up like it was mid-winter I thought I'd try and find a shop to get some extra gear.... Found a walmarts, managed to get a bum bag (v useful for couple of snacks as had forgotten my bento box), and a pair of fishing gloves - these were great actually as they were half rubberised and only cost something like $2..... bargain and they did the job in a cheap and efficient way on the bike.... did I mention is was less then 10degrees ??!!... Which was about 42 in US speak...... begs the question why did I only pack summer biking gear!? LOL! Anyhow, by the time I got back the rental place was open. Got a nice specialized bike and they kindly fitted my pedals, adjusted the seat and I was ready to go - well after buying some knee warmers that is. Set off with as many layers I could muster for a 2-3 hour ride!
Here's the trail map;I guess you can't make out much really... but there's plenty to see around and about, some of it residential, a golf course, a cement type works, some schools, and best of all - plenty of countryside and trees galore!
As for the ride -well I did just short of 60km in just over 2.5hours... and let's just say I cruised out, then it started to rain so I belted it back!!!.... I got cold and I got wet but it was GREAT! Also big shout out to the people at the bike rental place who were fab, extremely helpful, very kind and very welcoming. Going back again later in the week!
On to Tuesday...... So having made email contact with the Wes-man I even managed to text him - took a couple of goes as couldn't figure out what to put in front of the numbers to get it through! Anyhow, he offered to meet me at the Chattahoochee river near where he worked or suggested I could pick him up (VERY brave man!!!).... LOL.... so I opted for the second as it was good of him to be meeting me, having a run with me and showing me his training routes etc.... obviously I navigated with TomTom, although he didn't seem to quite be able to find the address....humm.. still I made it to the office and there was Wes in person! He hoped in the truck and gave me a great big Georgia bear hug (well what could be mustered across the seats!).... he then rapidly strapped himself in - obviously being a woman and driving on the wrong side of the road was a little worrying... well it was for me anyhow ;o) ...LOL!
We set off the half mile to the river - what a lovely place to run! Wes was supposed to be on quarter mile intervals and I was on a fartlek session... in the end I think we pretty much ran a tempo one.... not quite what either of us planned but it worked out that way which was great. I think we pretty much run at the same pace and we nattered, apart from "that" hill... along the way (note this was not an "easy run" and the natter did include the occasional huff and puff along the way!!)
This image is my Garmin sportstrack image;
It was really great meeting up with a fellow blogger! Bit of a surreal experience but a great one! A fabulous run to boot! Hopefully I'm going to be able to meet up with the legendary DeeDee and rest of the Wes-clan Thursday night!!
Now all I need is some of that Atlanta sunshine...
OBN 59.87km in 2hr 36mins (easy pace)
ORN 06.56km in 40mins (steady/ tempo)