Nov 16, 2012
Thanksgiving time!!! Since we do not have any family within twenty hours of flight, the tradition for the Roys is to go to South America! It is Costa Rica this year. I am hoping that Sharmila will like Costa Rica so much more than Chile from last year that she will change her mind from settling down in Zapaillar in Chile to some place in Costa Rica. That way it will be much easier for me to visit her when she settles down 🙂 Especially for Thanksgiving 🙂 🙂
For Bengalis – famous for their “monkey cap” with the pompoms on top – this was one cold run in 42 degrees. Worse, none of us were well prepared – no gloves and everybody in shorts. Paroma, Samaresh and myself managed to power ourselves thru. The idea of the extra hot latte and chocolate milk kept us going 🙂 It was a good 5K run – although we looked somewhat like Rudolf with our red noses at the end of it. And for the token sentiment towards Bengalis, Paroma came with the pompoms on her head!!! 🙂
Last few weeks, I have not had as many runs during the week as I normally do. A little too hectic travel and somewhat of laziness 🙂 is responsible. To get myself slapped back to routine, decided to go for a long run today. Should have joined the group and finished it off early morning. Instead, I waited till it had warmed up to the fifties. Took a lot more energy than I was bargaining for. 10 miles in the hills in just a shade under 100 minutes….
After a hiatus of a week – thanks to all that late night partying – the Sunday morning Bengali run was revived! It helped that we set the clocks back last night – gave the partyers some more time to sleep in 🙂 And yet only Amitesh and I showed up 🙁
On the other hand, we took full advantage of the crisp cold weather with very little wind and flat surface to post our best group run. 5K at 8:36 pace (total of 26 minutes 38 seconds). Best part was we were able to do this with negative splits (8:59, 8:39, 8:13 and 7:57).
Awesome! and Thanks Amitesh for the run and the coffee thereafter!
When I checked the local weather, it said 39 degrees and with wind chill it was 30 degrees. So, I did what any sane person would do – I dressed up for December and went out for a run. It was not half as cold as that and I was certainly overdressed 🙁 Within one mile, I had to start taking layers out. All in all, a good – if somewhat uncomfortable – run on a cold, very windy morning. To cool down, I put in 2K of rowing in the gym. I love the idea of the cold weather coming upon us. Nothing is more fun than daring the elements to go out for a run. Till people consider you insane, it is not worth doing it 🙂
It has been a tough time travel wise. Always weird when you fly back to home town for a few hours and not see your family. Anyways, on to more important things.. puzzle time…
Imagine a vertical tree 80 ft tall and a crow sitting right on the top of it. Now imagine a vertical tree 60 ft tall about 100 ft away from the first tree. The crow wants to fly to the top of the second tree BUT has to hit the ground once first enroute (essentially flying in two straight lines). What is the point on the ground it should hit so that it has to fly the least distance in all?
Don’t worry about the dimensions. Think about the intuitive answers…
Now is the Durga Puja time – the biggest celebration for Bengalis worldwide sans when Sourav hit a century. Yesterday, I thought I will explain some tidbits about Puja to 8-year old Nikita. So, at the Puja hall, I grabbed Nikita and her two friends who were running around and took them to where the idols were and asked them if they can find the vehicles of the gods. Now, for the uninitiated (which broadly includes me too 🙂 ), by our culture and religion, we have a lot of gods and goddesses. (and that is not even counting the fact that every Bengali parent thinks their sons and daughters are gods and goddesses by their own right 🙂 ). I think all of them (at least the most prominent ones) have a “vehicle” that they use to go around in.
About five of them are celebrated during Durga Puja. In of itself, if I remember correctly, the celebration is of the seniormost goddess Durga (representing the good force) killing the villain Mahisasur (representing the evil force). She did have an unfair advantage in that she had ten arms – so she could carry a lot more arms and ammunition than Mahisasur. In the Puja, she is graced by her two sons – Ganesh (who has an elephant’s head – that is a whole another story) who represents prosperity, success, general well being and such, Karthik (I think he is the god of handsomeness or something like that) and two daughters – Saraswati (goddess of music, art and literature) and Lakshmi (goddess of wealth).
Enough of the background. So, I asked them to find out the “vehicles” for the gods. Hint was to find the idols of small animals laying around the feet of the gods and goddesses.They were delighted to find out that Ganesh went around on a mouse, Lakshmi on an owl, Durga on a lion, Saraswati on a swan and Karthik on a peacock. Finally, they asked about a slain buffalo that was lying around. And they learnt that that was the vehicle for Mahisasur.
At night, I quizzed Nikita on the gods and vehicles and this is what she said (word for word) …
“The elephant god has a mouse. The goddess that makes all the money has an owl. Durga has a lion. The good looking god as a peacock and the goddess with the guitar has a swan”. Thought for a few more seconds and added: “… and the bad guys went around on buffaloes”
That was hilarious!
Aschhe bochhor abar hobey!!
Since most of my Bengali friends were sleeping in this morning after the Puja celebrations last night, I went ahead and ran in Fowler Park for a 10K run. It was really cool temperatures (mid forties) and I was not dressed for it – specially in the shaded parts of the run. Which was good – since that forced me run fast enough to warm myself up. I think I was the only one running in shorts and half sleeves. That and the fact it was flat surface was enough to make a big difference compared to my 10K hill runs yesterday. Almost 100 seconds per mile difference. Yesterday was 9:53 min/mile while today was 8:16!!
The run was extremely enjoyable. The Starbucks coffee all by myself after that – no so much 🙂
10K run in between dropping and picking up Nikita at her friend’s birthday party. The north Roswell hills were very pretty but very punishing. Slowed down to 10min/mile. Beautiful cool day with the sun shining bright. Now enjoying a strawberry smoothie at Starbucks waiting for the birthday party to get over…
Today I went to midtown Atlanta. It was cool (43 degrees) and the wind was stronger than I and bargained for. After a few minutes, I avoided my usual route and started heading down north-south streets (the wind was from the west). Other than that, it was a enjoyable run. The chapped lips and sniffles notwithstanding 🙂