this is the archive for the ‘just life’ category:


the bucolic experiment

one month ago, we temporarily relocated to the middle of nowhere in order to help my cousin daniela get through the national exams (and, fingers crossed, into college). so it’s been a month of synecdoches, trigonometry and mitochondria… but it’s also been a month where we’ve eaten loquats straight from the trees, dipped our feet on the ice-cold water of the water tank, saw my grandpa celebrate his 90th birthday, watered my mom’s vegetable patch and watched the bees buzz around in the afternoon sun…

carrots

everything here is simpler, cheaper, sunnier. it all feels foreign and yet, so familiar, so natural. i miss my friends and i miss the big city, but i feel almost… content here. it’s nice, this countryside life.

airport night run: my first 10km race!

the blog has been in a bit of a lull… april was a whirlwind of adventures and trips – i’ll try to catch up :)

first things first: earlier in april i’ve finished my first 10k race ever, without stopping nor fainting – a mighty accomplishment for my chubby self! :D

i even got a medal to prove it:

berlin airport run medal - 2014

(that funny shape on the medal is the outline of the race track, part of which are the airport’s runways!)

running a 10k race had been on my latest 101 things in 1001 days list, but i never thought i’d do it so soon, since up until very recently the most i had ever run was around 5km. but the airport night run sprung up on us and i grabbed the opportunity of running on what will one day become berlin’s shiny new airport. i mean, how often do you get to run on a future airport’s landing strip? :)

well, we do have the privilege of living next to a former airport, so i had run on a runway before… but i’d kind of forgotten that the new ones are much longer, around 4km in total… it felt like it went on and on forever! i forgot to take my ipod with me, and so spent the whole time running a speech in my head in several languages, in order to keep busy. i seem to need a sort of distraction to run, and missed my beloved podcasts dearly.

but it was ok in the end – in fact, it was actually rather nice! the race started around twilight, and by the time we finished it was completely dark and all the airport lights were on, giving the track a bit of an otherworldly feeling. volunteers cheered us on enthusiastically in the dark, and gave people high-fives… it was magical! i just kept running and running and running until the finish line… it took me 1:10 to do the 10km, at a very relaxed 7:00/km.

so yay! it was good and i’m glad i did it… but now is time to finish this airport, ok berlin?

8 years together

<3

alle guten dinge sind drei

it’s our third berlinversary!

wow… we’ve never been this long in the same place before! :)

lisbon’s mini-marathon

remember two years ago, when i said i didn’t run? well… it’s fair to say things have changed a bit since then. it started while cheering for the athletes on the berlin marathon, last year. some of the people running the course were quite old or didn’t look very physically fit… and yet they were doing this amazing endurance feat! and it got me thinking that i should be able to do it too, at least a little bit. i mean, i’m just a regular person, i should be able to run a few kilometers! so i decided it was time to quit my whining and just do something about it.

i like how easy it is to get going: grab some shorts and an old tshirt, some music, lace your shoes, and off you go. i run with the boy until i get tired (about 5km in) and then i let him go on for the rest of his (much faster paced) run. so far, i’ve ran a total of 155km, and i plan on slowly running my way to a total of 300km this year.

also, i confess i’ve always been secretly jealous of his running medals… which is silly, i know… but now i can enter competitions of my own and get my own medals! :D i truly love how democratic running is: anyone can enter these races, just sign up and run run run!

so i did! here’s my brother and me, heading towards the starting line for lisbon’s mini-marathon:

the race is just 7km, and filled with people enjoying this unique opportunity to cross the amazing 25 de abril bridge on foot, so the pace is slow and relaxed. while the boy sweated his ass off on the half-marathon, the two of us leisurely jogged our way to the finish line, stopping to take photos and admire the view :)

my grandpa helped build this bridge, back in the 60s, and i couldn’t be prouder of him for such a fine job! it truly is a stunning work of engineering.

and of course, there were medals! and ice-cream too, which was lovely! :)

(oh! and the boy ran the 21km in 1:28, breaking his previous record! humpf! :P )