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Day 356: Running in Portland and a Racey Hat Story

I woke up to the sound of spring rain.  I opened the sliding door to let Honey Dog out. She just glared at me. Honey Dog does not do rain. But I do. I love the smell, the sound, how green it makes everything.  I feel a bit lazy today.  Like staying at home in my pajamas lazy.

I put in one of our prepared, frozen crockpot meals. On the menu today: Chicken fajitas. All I did was plopped the frozen meal in the crockpot, set it for 6 hours on low, squeezed a lime on top and then secured the lid. Dinner is done! And already the aroma wafting through the house is making my tummy growl!

I do not think I have time to get to the gym before I go teach. It is raining outside, but the temperature is mild. I think I might try a trail walk and some stretching.

 Nearly a year ago, when I first began writing this blog, I talked about running. This is a quote from my first post on Tuesday, May 12, 2015:

The Time is Now!

"...the bottom line is that I need to take drastic measures if I want to regain my health and fitness.  Not that it is ever too late, but my life minutes are ticking by. And I could be enjoying a much higher quality of life.

I ache. I am uncomfortable.  I don't like my appearance.

I used to be fit.  Of course that was many moons ago.  I ran 2 miles a day when I was a teenager. Then I started weight training in college.  I danced in the discoth√®que but then life happened.  Stress. Bills. Kids. Divorce. Food became my best friend.  

Well, FOOD, we need to talk!  This relationship is not serving me anymore!  I will no longer serve my cravings and tummy, it will serve me. By adding vitality and moderation to my life!

And I am going to add some pain. Yes pain.  Take it up a notch.  Work out harder and smarter. 

And I am starting to run again.  My goal is to run the Portland Marathon. But I will be setting smaller, more attainable goals along the way.

My name is Zita and I welcome you along with me on this journey!

I have come a long way since then. But I have a long way to go. Not that life is a destination.  We know where it leads. But I am a woman of faith. I hope to get my reward after this mortal life.

While we are here, though. I would like to continue to improve my quality of life. And in so doing, I hope to help others. 

As I look forward to my second year on this journey,  I am starting think about runs in Portland. Oh my goodness. I just did a wee bit of research. Portland is a running city for sure. Check out this link.  A run nearly every day for the upcoming spring and summer months.

I am not sure if I am ready for a big event. Physically, financially and emotionally. 

I think I will spend the next year continuing on the same path, but raising the bar a bit.  More exercise.  Harder workouts.  If I feel confident that I would survive a long, competitive walk, then I will sign up!  I do still want to work towards more running.  My walks are faster and stronger.  

The competitive runs are a bit spendy, especially since I am wavering and not certain I will actually be brave enough to participate once I register.

This is about where I was last year in my thinking when I discovered the $5 5K runs through Portland Parks and Recreation.  They take place in beautiful Portland parks and are only $5 to register!

My chamber group has another concert tomorrow. The last one of the season. We will break for summer. Good timing. I can really focus on my exercise then!  

But now, for my racey hat story....

My new friend, Ellis! He gave me permission to post his picture. :)

Tuesday, after blogging at the St. Johns Library, following our chamber music concert at St. Johns Christian Church, I took off exploring the quaint little community known as St. Johns. I really felt at home. A lot of people walking about. Funky old storefronts. Plenty of restuarants and of course, the obligatory Starbucks!

I settled on salmon teriyaki for lunch.  Then I went across the street to wait for my bus.

A man walked by with a funny hat.  I did not want to stare, but it did bring back memories of my emoji sticker faux pas.  I had ordered some emoji stickers for my piano students.  You know, the different faces and icons people use whilst texting. But I did not preview them before offering them to my students. Luckily, one of my older students noticed how inappropriate they were! I removed the gun emoji, the cigarette emoji, the beer emoji and the martini emoji.
 But I did not realize the sticker I thought was smiling chocolate ice cream, was in fact a poop emoji! Luckily my niece discovered that one. She begged me to let her keep it. My brother was ok with it.  She still teases me. "Aunt Zita, remember the poop sticker?"

Well, the man with the hat today was in fact wearing a poop hat.  I nodded at him and smiled. "Poop hat?"

"Yes", he grinned back.

Apparently he was out doing some pre parade PR.  The St. Johns Parade is coming up May 14th. He is a vendor.  His name is Ellis. He told me to tell my readers that you can find his stand near the Home Plate Restaurant on Lombard in St. Johns.

St. Johns is a part of Portland, Oregon.  Need I say more?

Happy Friday!


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