It was a long weekend for us. We hosted two Japanese exchange students for the weekend. It seems so short and yet so long. We picked them up on Friday from school with our son. They stayed at our place on Friday and Saturday nights and we returned them to school Sunday afternoon.
Friday evening I was out of the festivities since I had a haircut scheduled. Haircuts with Pamela can not be rescheduled. We actually schedule out an entire year’s worth of haircuts. Cancelling is not an option. Plus, I needed a haircut. LKY, the significant other like no other, took the boys and ours to the UH men’s volleyball game with a bunch of the other host families. There is safety in numbers. Fun was had by all.
Saturday we met the other families at Ala Moana Shopping Center, ate lunch together and then went over to Ala Moana Beach Park for some outdoorness. The kids ended up staying in the water for over two hours. The Japanese students and Hongwanji Mission School kids gravitated into their own groups, mostly due to the communication issues, if I had to guess. My son, despite having been in Japanese language class since kindergarten is unable to say much of anything. Most of his “Japanese” consists of placing odd accents on English words, like “ready”. It is amusing and not that helpful.
On Sunday morning, I left early to go and run the Hawaii Pacific Health Women’s 10K. I love this race. It is all women, which you think is not a big thing, but then it kind of is. An added bonus is that my bootcamp coach, KC, is the race coordinator. She is the one who speaks, with a bullhorn at the start, which I thought was her favorite thing but she admitted on race morning that really she loves riding on the back of a motorcycle during the race. But I think that her second favorite thing must be yelling at people through a bullhorn. At the beginning of the race, KC stands on something high to address the runners. In the past it has been a van but today it was a very tall ladder. And of course, she teared up a little. I like to think that it is because these events are sort of like children and she loves them. And she has put so much of her heart in them. You can feel it when she is talking.
A friend and I did the race together and we both decided that today was the first time we remembered it raining during this race. But rain it did today. My poor running shoes had just dried out from a 5K volunteering stint on Wednesday with the infamous KC. Now they are soaked through again and as I sit here and write this evening, the stank of wet shoes keeps reaching me. It is not pleasant. So it kind of rained a good deal as we stood at the start line this morning, ensuring that everyone was pretty much soaked through. I wear an old pair of glasses when I run and the entire race they were a) wet and b) fogged up. I basically could not see anything the whole time that I ran. The only good thing was that it was not overly humid out while the race was going on.
I ran like I always run. And I am a good runner. I could totally be a better runner if I actually trained and stuff. But I don’t. I managed to finish the course in just under one hour and ended up being 13th in my age group (out of 127) which made me feel pretty darn good about myself. Side note: when we went to pick up our numbers that morning in the dark and the rain. The guy asked my name and I told him. He showed me the sticker on the back of my number with my age division on it and asked if it was correct. I said yes. He asked me if I was sure. I said yes. Then he told me that I in no way looked like I could be the age in my age group, that I did not look that old. It was funny and complimentary. But I was standing in the rain and it was dark. Maybe that helped put an extra spring in my step.
We took our students to Bishop Museum in the morning after my race and to Zippy’s for lunch before dropping them off at school. I can’t lie. I was glad to not have them with me anymore. It is a lot. I think about it from the perspective that I have someone else’s kids who I am responsible for. They did not drown. They were not sunburned. They were well fed. Having strangers in your house, makes you change so much of what goes on there. No parading about in your underwear. No changing clothes or going to the bathroom with doors open. It is nice to be able to feel more relaxed at home.
And now it is the day after and my shoes are still super stinky from being soaked through again. The borrowed sheets are clean. I am peeing with the bathroom door open again. I am happy with my race results. I am sad that another one of my friends is leaving Hawaii, my favorite boot camp instructor and race director extraordinaire. I have come full circle with the leaving. It used to be people left because they were young and here temporarily for jobs or school or the military or on a whim. I remained and now it is because they are older and they are far from their families and their parents are older or sick or dying. Or all of the above. The leaving, it makes me sad in my heart. And it makes me wonder. The small voice questioning staying. Fearing going. All I can say is that getting older is definitely not for the weak. And I hope that I can be strong.