Friday, June 22, 2012

Donkeys In Palo Alto

I lived in Texas my whole life, and so I've done most of my running in Texas.  When I travel I've always really enjoyed going out for a run.  You get views of things that you never would by driving and you cover a whole more area than if you were walking.

It's funny that the only time I can count on seeing Donkey's on a run, is when I visit Palo Alto, California on a work trip.  There are two Donkey's that live right in the middle of Palo Alto. Right along a hike and bike trail, past the million dollar 1,000 sq ft homes that are popular in Palo Alto, all of the sudden there is a nice little fenced in area with Donkeys.  The hometown of Stanford, Hewlett Packard, VMware, and many other high tech companies also has two Donkeys.

This is the kind of thing I would have never expected.

By the way, I can't remember ever seeing Donkeys in the middle of a neighborhood on any of my runs in Texas. Although I must admit that I have seen quiet a variety of wild animals in my Round Rock neighborhood over the years.

So this was always a mystery to me.  Here is the answer as to how the Donkey's arrived in the center of an exclusive neighborhood full of professors and high tech geeks.  It turns out they were there first and they have a trust fund to keep them there.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Heat Insanity

When I walk out of the air conditioning and into the Texas summer heat, the first thing that I usually think of is how great it would be to go for a run.  I know that there is something wrong with me, but running in the heat is something that I like to do.

The heat doesn't help my speed - I run slower when it is hot - but I do enjoy it.  I'm not exactly sure why.  I also don't really go for long runs in the heat - just a few miles - so I don't get dehydrated.

To illustrate exactly how intense this sickness is for me, let me point to two extreme runs that I did last year.

At the beginning of the year I was in the mountains of New Mexico.  There was snow on the ground and the temperature was hovering around freezing.  I decided to go for a run at about 4 in the afternoon.  It got colder as I ran, with a reading of around 17 when I got back to the house.  This is the run that I most dislike. Ever.  There was no heat involved.

In late August, the day that I flew out to VMworld, I went for a run just after lunch.  The weather guy on the radio station I was listening to came on and said the temperature was 104.  I was at least in the shade for a good part of this run.  This day ended up being the hottest day in Austin history. I loved this run and felt great afterwards. Tons O Heat = Good Run.