Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Stop! St. Louis

Get it? The St. Louis Marathon/Half Marathon back in April was called Go! St. Louis. I'm in St. Louis but not here to run a marathon. So I'm calling it Stop! St. Louis.

I'm actually here for the National Drug Court Annual Training Conference. The Stop! came in to play early when we tried to check in to the conference and they didn't have our registrations. After much confusion, that was all worked out and I'm checked in now, but it was too late to go to a morning session (I decided), so I am doing other "work" instead.

When I'm traveling I like to run locally, so I set out this morning for a St. Louis run. I had gotten a map from the concierge, and I started out by running about a half mile to the Arch Park and looping around the outside of the park (with a detour up one of the many flights of stairs to the actual Arch).

Then I followed the river until I got to the beginning of the Riverside Trail. That seemed like a good place for running, and I'm sure it is in theory, but at 7:00 in the morning it was just too isolated and scary for me. It starts out in a deserted-seeming industrial-seeming area, and follows the river with a big concrete wall between you and the street. Although it is a nice paved path, the phrase "body found in river" kept echoing through my mind. I had planned (given the amount of time I had left) to run out for 15 minutes and back, but I changed it to 10 minutes, then 5 minutes before I turned around and headed back toward the park.

I spent the rest of my time running around the paths in Arch Park. I don't know if I'll be able to go back to the Riverside Trail. I would love to run a distance on it, but since I'm the only runner in my group I would be reluctant to set out alone again. It might be more populated later in the day, but that doesn't seem like a good time for running! (Heat, humidity, and, oh yeah, I'm supposed to be at a training.)

N.b. Starbucks is much more expensive in St. Louis than the Seattle area.

This is, believe it or not, the best picture I could manage to take of myself in front of the Arch. Yes, the others were actually worse. There is something about cell phone self-portraits that makes you look incredibly homely. Vanity, thy name is Kristin!

(So let me make it perfectly clear, I do not look like this picture!)

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