Run, Baby, Run

Race Day! Wow, 5:30 comes really EARLY when you've gone to bed at 1:30. I was too wound up to fall asleep last night - and did you know that the Brady Bunch comes on at midnight?

We arrived, in a bit of a daze, at the race grounds. Mike's shoulder was hurting, but he was ready to rumble.

He and John, a Victory Home graduate who is in the 3-year apprenticeship program, got their ankle timers and hit the road around 8:15, and we began the challenge of staying ahead of them so we could cheer them on.

...and hand Mike his drink.

It was a quiet, attractive location. The sunshine came and went. The temperature was in the high 40's.

That's Mike in the blue shirt.

And here he is about to finish!

He's wearing Flutterbug's windbreaker, since I didn't have the foresight to hang onto his fleece jacket for him!

John had never run this distance before today (8.75 miles) and he did great - Mike said he thinks he'll just make him Victory Home's designated runner in the future. Guess Mike's ready for retirement!

I am so proud of my Valentine - he has such self-discipline, and is so motivated to help Victory Home (this race raised $100 per kilometer) that he pushes through adverse conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis and an injured shoulder, and accomplishes a feat that I'd never tackle in the first place. He's quite a guy!

After a long bath, a pancake, egg and grapefruit lunch, a trip to church to take care of some unexpected problems (by the way, yesterday was a Series of Unfortunate Events, including the box truck catching fire while on the road to pick up donations; another box truck, rented to replace it, snagging a low-hung phone line which yanked the entire electrical box off our building, causing us to have to evacuate, and losing power until Tuesday next week!), and coming home to take a short nap, we had a nice Valentine's Supper of roasted chicken, green beans and baked potatoes.

It's the first time I've brined a chicken. Brining calls for a cup of salt and 5 quarts of water to soak the chicken in. Now, I ask you, what kind of container can hold a cup of salt, 5 quarts of water and a fat chicken? I used a giant plastic bowl, added only 3 quarts of water (after already adding the salt), tried to rake out some of the salt with my fingers so it would be more proportionate to the amount of water, tried to add the big ole chicken, and made a mini saltwater river on my countertop. Scooped out a bunch of the water with a cup, and ended up with about 2 quarts of water, and one exposed chicken back. And that was in my biggest container, bigger than my stock pot. I guess I'll need to wash out a 5-gallon paint can next time.

However, the chicken was indeed juicy and moist, as brining is purported (word-of-the-week) to accomplish, and not salty-tasting at all. I rubbed it with olive oil, a clove or two of crushed garlic, freshly ground salt and pepper, and a sprig of rosemary from the back porch. Then stuffed it with a dressing of onions, butter, sage, honey wheat bread, slivered almonds and dried cranberries. Looked in all the cupboards for things to add, and that's the combination that resulted.

Now I'm full and sleepy and worn out from all that early risin' and walkin' and cheerin' and cookin'. Tomorrow morning I'll worry about the challenges of a worship service with no electricity or heat. And then I'll blog all about it!


Modemom said...

Those of us who know and love Mike appreciate his strength in times of adversity and his desire to do all he can to point the way to Christ.

That chicken looks really wonderful. You've left me in the dust! Time to get going on that family cookbook we've talked about for so long! xxxooo

BBC said...

Your dinner has me drooling! I took Jasmine to a Greek diner tonight so I could enjoy a gyro! She got a mini-sub.

Congrats to Mike on the run! Good for him! I don't suffer from anything but lack of desire for doing anything that strenuous. Way to go, Mike! I hope your legs still work in the morning!

The Inept Aspirant said...

The chicken looks wonderful! And Yay! to Mike for finishing the race!