(#23) Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon – Part 1 (I Forgot My Precious, Precious Hat?!)

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Awww! This made my week!

What a joy to do this race! I was giddy with anticipation all week, mainly because I finally got to be reunited with Wendy and Marty! They are the sweetest of sweethearts. If you don’t know who they are, you can search for them on this blog. (They pop up a fair amount.) I met them at a 5k, and we’ve had amazing adventures together ever since.

I didn’t arrive in Napa Valley until 2am the morning of the race. (I couldn’t leave L.A. until after a class on Saturday.) Wendy and Marty were kind enough to let me crash in their 2-bedroom suite. So, I quietly snuck in, in the middle of the night, and found a note and a protein bar waiting on my pillow. Adorable, right?

Wendy and Marty have this energy that just kind of wraps around you anytime you’re around them – it’s like a perpetual hug from their auras.

I had a wonderful night’s sleep in a super comfy bed. When  I got to see them in the morning, it was as exciting as… well, it was as exciting as seeing them! They get their own special excitement that I don’t want to liken to anything else.

I commented how great it was for us all to be back together. Marty commented back something like, “Yes. All of us but the pants.” Oh, I know. Those precious, precious pants. At least, when talking about them, we get to use the best emotion – laughter through tears.

Side note: You know how Marty knew about my poor, poor pants? He still takes a gander at the blog! Yep. He may even be reading this sentence right now. It makes me feel so special when people read my blog – especially when people as cool as Marty think I’m cool enough to read about! How super cool is that? Cool explosion.

Going back to our morning – I slept in my racing outfit (sad short pants and all). I wanted to get up at the last minute, and have as little to do in the morning as possible. I thought, “Do I have everything? I guess so. I feel as though I have less stuff than usual, but I don’t have my bib or chip yet, so that must be it.”

After we got there and Wendy and I picked up my bib and chip, she looked at me and said, “Where’s your hat?” My eyes shot open wider than they’d ever widened. Oh. my. goodness. Everybody commence freakout.

I realized that not only did I not have my hat at the race – I was pretty sure I’d left it in the shuttle from the San Francisco airport to Napa Valley! Oh no.

Before anybody freaks out too much, let’s all remember that I have a duplicate back-up hat at home. And there is currently at least one up on Ebay as well. So, this won’t be nearly as depressing as the pants.

Nonetheless, obviously we have to freak out a little. I was outside. In nature. In the elements and such. And I didn’t have protection on my face!

When we first left the house, it was still pretty dark outside. And it was a very overcast day, which is why I didn’t think about it until Wendy said something. (Even though you’d think 23 races into this year, I’d know how to get dressed by now. But I guess I don’t.) Oh man, my forehead is exposed!

You may be thinking, “How in the world did you leave your favorite hat in the shuttle? Aurora! Your pants, your hat. You’re not allowed to have nice things anymore.” First off, yes, I agree. Maybe I shouldn’t be allowed to have nice things.

Secondly, in answer to your question, here’s what happened. I went to sleep across the backseat of the shuttle. And the hat was getting in my way, because of the bill. In my half-sleep state, I took it off and set it on the ground with my stuff. I’m guessing that over the course of the next two hours, it ended up moving somewhere else on the floor of the van.

As I got out of the van, I did one of those last looks back, as I always do when leaving a place, just to make sure I didn’t leave anything behind. But it was late. It was dark. I didn’t do a thorough look. I didn’t see anything, and I knew I had only brought two bags – my backpack and my computer case. I had both of those. What could I possible be missing?

Sigh. This is where I’ll pick up tomorrow.

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