Sunday, June 21, 2009

Fun = Pain? Pain = Fun?

So if your idea of a good time includes pain, or your idea of pain includes a good time, then have I got a day for you! Let me start at the beginning though, I often find that the best way to start or begin.

I am not 100% sure, but I think the guilty party is a co-worker who booked a meeting with me on Wednesday and sat across from me stating she “didn’t want to get too close” as she had the flu. Why do you people come to work? Really? Come on, are you serious?

Suffice it say, by Thursday evening with the boys I was not feeling top drawer and was glad when Fauntleroy was ready to head home. Friday I worked from home but after a couple conference calls, went back to bed. When I got up I was fuzzy in the head but felt pretty good, or so I tried to convince myself.

I checked my list, packed my bag and headed to Union Station to pick Momo (aka Mandy or Amanda) who I have known since grade 7 English. We have been thick as thieves ever since. As she lives in Barrie, I do not get to see her nearly as often as I would like, but after 28 years you expect paths to take different directions. I am blessed to still call her my friend! Although this morning I was not so sure.

As she climbed into Lucy, I told her to avoid the usual hug and kiss as I did not want to make her ill. We zoomed off to IronMan’s for dinner and a strategy planning session. Dinner preparations underway, we were entertained by “Peter”, the child of another couple joining us for dinner. I will give credit where credit is due and that is one cute entertaining toddler.

However, as my temperature increased, my appetite decreased and I couldn’t take anymore peek-a-boo. I made my apologies and headed to bed telling Momo we could get up at 6:00 and plan our attack then. Not one to take ill on a regular basis, I had forgotten what a terrible sleep you can have when you don’t feel well. There was no vomit or anything nasty. But I would be on fire one second, freezing the next, my skin was tender to the touch and all those lovely sensations.

At one point I woke up and had to put a towel on the bed. I had sweat so much that I had soaked through the sheets and mattress pad! At least I hope it was sweat. And I had to get another pillow… it was brutal. But on the plus side it felt like my fever was breaking.

I felt 90% better the next morning and my pre-tea and food snide comments let Momo and IronMan know I was back. French Toast and fruit in our bellies, we headed to Metro Hall to meet the 500+ other teams that were there for Toronto’s first City Chase of the Year!

It’s like the Amazing Race, but in one city and it lasts 6 hours. Better though as you can actually take part! Our first task was to partner with another team and complete a scavenger hunt in order to get our clue sheet. They gave you 9 items and you had to collect 6. Although we didn’t get a picture of a stranger with a full moon, we did manage to get two people dressed backwards, 3 pennies – one from the 70s, 80s and 90s, the time for the next flight to Quebec City (on Air Canada), the lyrics to some Nickelback song, a page from a newspaper from two days previous (I had to dumpster dive for that) and find the words to the chapter and verse of a bible passage. Thankfully Momo had a cell phone and one of the other team members had a blackberry to find a lot of that!

Clue sheet in hand, we bid the other team adieu, pulled out our maps and plotted our course. Our route would not have been possible without the help of Kerouac (thanks again) as he was our "phone a friend" with Google close at hand.

At GoodLife Fitness (who knew Union Station Street is not in Union Station?) you had to pick a chocolate bar and then burn off that number of calories on a treadmill or stationary bike. Thankfully I knew dark chocolate had fewer calories than milk and in 12 minutes we had burned our 230 calories.

Ryerson was next and easy to find ~ good thing I paid attention when I attended. A quick game of wheelchair basketball and we headed to Church and Wellesley where you were provided a Blackberry and another list of 8 things, 6 of which you had to complete in 30 minutes or there was a 50 minute delay penalty. A picture of a tattoo below the waist – easy, getting a stranger to sing “I’m a Little Teapot” – easy, as was taking a picture of someone on their Blackberry (talk about sponsorship placement), taping your teammate doing a random act of kindness for 15 seconds (Momo hugged some lady on the street), and getting someone to stand on either end of a rainbow flag with you. The best was eating a piece of food with a stranger. Kind of like the spaghetti scene from Lady and the Tramp. Luckily we had packed snack and I convinced someone to share a granola bar with me.

Heading to the Danforth, we found ourselves learning to tie bowties on each other. Neat trick, close your eyes and do the same thing you do when you tie your shoes. Works like a treat! We then headed, not with Momo’s blessing, to Riverdale Pool. She didn’t want to do any water type events but as the lifejackets we wore, upside down with your legs through the arm holes like diapers, were tied together, she didn’t have much choice when I jumped in.

Holding one of those big exercise balls over your heads you had to walk back and forth across the pool twice. I could literally walk as the water did not go above my neck. When Momo’s feet no longer touch the bottom, she floated on her back while I pulled her and the ball.

Next came the WORST challenge and why I am today cursing my ‘friend’ ~ Boot camp. 50 burpies, 100 m. of leg lunges, sprint back that same 100 m. pick up two 10 lb weights – 30 shoulder presses, 50 curls and some stupid squat thing. Oh yeah, and then carry a medicine ball up Riverdale Hill! And did I mention it was now raining?

Heading to Queen W. we hit the Lulu Lemon store where I had to put Momo and another stranger off the street (whoever says people in Toronto are not friendly, are not running around in CityChase t-shirts – we had such a great response from people) into 3 partner postures. Easy for me. Badda-boom badda-bing.
Not so easy what came next. Flip a coin and you either got a snake around your shoulders or a tarantula on your face. Momo got no legs and I got eight. It was pretty gross and seemed like a LONG 30 seconds.

As we had also raised money for Right to Play, we only had to complete one more task. More water for Momo! Two kayaks were tied together side-by-each and you had to paddle out about 30 m around a buoy and back. By this time it was teaming down rain. But run we did and finish we did. It is still not on the official website, but we are confident we did top 200.

A much needed shower later and guests departed, I suggested to IronMan we go to sleep….at 8:30. I could tell my flu was about to come back with a vengeance and my legs were ready to seize. I awoke this morning to find both predictions had come true. Boo.

There is another chase in August that I just don’t think I can manage. I have also sworn off next year. But as a couple people at the after-chase celebration ceremony said, in a couple weeks when the lactic acid is gone and you have no more sore muscles, you’ll find yourself sucked back in. Secretly I hope so as I did have fun. But I won't tell Momo she was right.


Blogger Blair said...

Ahh. I passed a bunch of you crazy people on my way into a film festival screening. Now I understand!

Did I tell you I know the guy who invented the burpee? A girl I know named Susie Burpee - her dad was a gym teacher in Winnipeg. Susie is now a dancer here in Toronto.

Well wasn't that...just...interesting.

4:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought Lucy died? Isn't your new car Liza?

9:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

12:02 AM  
Blogger Robert Mitchell L.L. said...

and what are you thinking?

7:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The lyrics pretty much sum it up

8:17 PM  
Blogger Robert Mitchell L.L. said...

thanks.... I think?

10:58 AM  

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