I’ll review the marathons and first class transpacific segments separately but here is a rundown of the trip. Description below.
Flew Cathay Pacific first class DCA-JFK-HKG-BKK with a stopover in Hong Kong. Stayed at Richard’s crash pad (CX pilot) in Midlevels. Continued to BKK stayed with my friend bobs before moving to Khao San for 3 nights for the Bangkok marathon. 2am start, super hot and humid. Course started in a beautiful location but ended up being an out and back on a raised freeway. Worst marathon I’ve run so far.
Flew to Phuket and visited Koh Phi Phi and a Buddhist temple with Ae. Also ate at the best Indian restaurant in Phuket (Badsha). Flew to Osaka via Seoul. Went to Tin’s Hall my first night and there was a private party for a wedding the next day. Got invited to both! Super nice people. Went clubbing in Osaka and was given some japanese icebreakers..
Next morning went to Kyoto and visited a bunch of temples and the famous canal/waterfront known for cherry blossoms. Saw maybe 1% of what Kyoto has to offer.
Took a Nozomo bullet train from Osaka to Himeji. Himeji castle was breathtaking and has a great running path around the base.
Stayed at the World Friendship Center in Hiroshima Japan. Visited the Hiroshima Castle, Peace Park and met with a bomb survivor. She was 12 years old and 3.5km from the hypocenter of the blast. Both her parents were killed. Father had 100% body burns and she took care of him for a week before he died. 140,000 people died that day, hundreds of thousands more over the next decades (radiation). Everyone I talked to acknowledged the atrocities Japan committed expanding their empire and decried war in general.
Spent a day on Miyajima island and saw the shrine at high tide and low tide. Tram to the top of Mt Misen for stunning views of the surrounding sea. Flew from Hiroshima airport (rome 2 rio got me super lost) to Tokyo.
Tachikawa Grand Hotel was my base camp to run the Mount Fujisan Marathon. Took a 2 hour (each way) train to pickup my packet on Saturday and woke up the next morning to do the same train ride again to run the marathon. Most beautiful of the 5 marathons I have run so far (Fujisan, Midnight Sun, Angkor Empire, Dewey, Bangkok). Rode the goofiest train to get to Kawaguchiko and the marathon (Thomas the tank engine themed). Marathon was equipped with Jazz bands along the course and we were invited to use indoor bathrooms. Of course this meant taking off our shoes. They set off fireworks to alert runners of the minimum time/distance requirements. Pure luck let me catch a set of the fireworks on camera. I ended up running 28 miles which was very unfortunate. GAMBARE!
Flew back NRT-JFK-DCA in Japan Airlines first class. I was the youngest person in first class (by FAR) and I ended up drinking a little too much on that flight (4 different french wines, 2 different champagnes and 4 different types of sake) — 13 hour flight. Endless royal blue tea ($175 a bottle!!!). Flight attendant dropped a teapot on me and it ended up being a great icebreaker. She asked if I had a Japanese girlfriend 🙂 Saw a BRILLIANT display of the northern lights while flying over Alaska (did not photograph well).
Landed back at DCA passing over the lagoon and SCOW headquarters (Sailing Club of Washington). Being hit with the usual culture shock after returning from Asia. Can’t wait to go back. Don’t know how many more marathons I can handle in the SE Asia humidity.
I need a GOPRO!!!!
Inspired by Siri Opsal. I’m trying to get better at taking pictures 😛
Chet Faker – No Diggity
Jon and Roy – By the Sea
Tom Odell – Another Love (Zwettte)
Lykke Li – I Follow Rivers (FlicFlac)