Friday, October 19, 2012

Dinner with Triathletes

I am among kindred spirits here. Tonight I had the pleasure of dinner with three triathletes who are part of the 8-person crew who will hike for three days in Rotorua following the race. I did not know them before coming to New Zealand, but during this meal that we shared, it was one moment after another of finding myself identifying strongly with them.

Caroline and I both got excited about the steamed broccoli side. When the waiter suggested that we might share just one, we each politely said NO WAY. There is no sharing where broccoli is concerned, we each wanted it all for ourselves!

Suzanne wondered about portions being sufficient for her appetite. (I thought I was the only person who worried about that sort of thing!) We got reassurance from the waiter that the entrees were reasonable and not those tiny little gourmet morsels centered on a huge plate with some pureed something-or-other squirted into a random artsy design.

Let me tell you, there was no wasted food. We left four very empty plates, but had four sated appetites.

At least among the four of us, the commonalities were: (1) food is of vital importance; (2) we don't like waiting around; (3) we don't like being hungry.

This hiking stuff could prove interesting. We discussed whether the hike leaders/hosts know what they are getting into trying to keep us all fed and happy!! (I didn't even mention the buffet pasta meal after the opening ceremony the other day....SCARY to see all the ravenous triathletes going after it.)

Dave shared a bit about his triathlon career dating back to the 80's and racing Kona in a Speedo. He's 72 now, he won a gold in the Aquathlon Wednesday, but he still talked about hitting speedwork and track workouts to sharpen up his run for next season. He's competitive and works hard to be at his best. I've thought that maybe it's weird at my age to strive so hard to improve, but I learned from Dave that there's nothing wrong with the desire to be your best at any age.

Certainly an upside to an event like Nationals or Worlds is spending time with others who share the same interests, and it turns out, some similar characteristics. Pretty cool!