the closest i ever came to the Western States 100 was fetching beers for an old russian guy in a hostel at squaw valley.
i was taking part in a stage race from reno to san francisco. there were several hardcore international guys and a few of us mere mortals along for the ride. the old guy retired to his bunk in squaw valley after the day’s run. he spoke no english, other than the word beer. as a reluctant ambassador of good will, i fetched. and fetched. he believed in carbs.
the race consisted of a marathon a day, so we ran the first 26 miles of the western states course mas o menos as the daily stage of the race, and then the last. i always thought i’d make it back some day for the ws100, but then life happened. still, whenever the race comes around, those memories come back. i feel a connection to that trail. a good memory.
so of course i spent the day watching the race, which turned out to be a crazy one. leader goes from on pace to break the course record by 30 minutes to being swept downstream and paddling for his life, then hopelessly lost with just a few miles to the finish.trail running is a cruel mistress. or a mister. i’m not sure trails have a gender, although today sounded like a mister along the trail would’ve been lovely.
and anyhow, i still feel crappy, so any excuse to sit one out is a good excuse.
the cosmos sending me a sign for the jackalope? beats me. all i know is all this running makes me want a beer. i think i’ll send me to fetch one. just for old times.