17 November 2013

Quick trip to southern California

I drafted this post while on the flight back to PDX after a quick jaunt to LA this weekend.  My cross country team and I traveled south to compete in the regional championships at Pomona College.  We had a pretty good showing, the women finished 6th out of twenty teams and the men finished 16th.  It was a lot of fun but a very quick and scheduled trip.  Friday was a travel day, we arrived in LA in the afternoon, just in time to run over the course before sunset.  We ate a lot of pasta and salad at an Italian restaurant before retiring to the hotel for an early night.  Saturday we woke up early to eat a little breakfast, nothing too heavy before a race.  By 7:30 we were en route to the course.  Women ran at 9am and the men at 10:15.  It was a great race, over 140 racers in the women's race and at least double that in fans cheering for the various teams represented.  I ran with six other LC girls, my family here in Portland.  We've been through a lot this season, ups and downs, tears and smiles, all getting ready for this one day.  The day to show everyone else what we really can do.  We missed qualifying for the national race as a team by a few places but I finished 12th and earned an individual bid to the D3 national championship race in Hanover, IN next weekend.  I will travel with my coach and see what I can do individually among a huge field of competitors.  Who knows what will happen, but I'm honored, happy, shocked, excited, and frightened all at once. 
Just a few of the highlights of the trip: chatting with the team as we flew from PDX to Burbank, running in warmer weather (even though we did bring some rain down the coast with us), running past a chicken coop during the race, eating weird fruits during our cool down run after the race (Pomona has a beautiful garden which we ran past during the race), being one of the many athletes on that campus all there to have fun and work hard, going to In-N-Out with the team on the way back to the airport (worth the stomach ache that immediately followed the order of french fries I ate), ending the whole thing with smiles and laughs and excitement about Fall Ball (the school dance that happened last night). 
My team is one of the best parts about LC and I don't know what I would do without that group of wonderful people.  We can accomplish anything we want together and that is powerful thing to be a part of.