Tuesday, January 27, 2009

OK here we go....

On to the trip... (I'm going to write all the restaurants we went to for all my Orthodox food deprived friends. Maybe I'll even tell you what we ordered for maximum gastronomic fun)


We left early early early on Thursday's Benjie half asleep at the airport. Poor guy, I tortured him with pictures this trip.

We crammed ourselves into our Spirit Airlines seats. Note to readers: If you are above 5 foot 3 inches, stay away from Spirit Airlines. It was. not. normal. Look at Benjie's legs!!

We got to Ft Lauderdale Airport right on time, good thing, because Benjie might have lost circulation in his legs.

Got the rental car, and as we were pulling out, the tire pressure light went on. So they switched us. To this. We felt ridiculous. But we had no problem finding it in parking lots! And have you ever heard that flashy cars get pulled over more often? It's true. But that's a story for Monday.

So since it was a "cold snap" (hahahahahahahaha) in Miami that day and only 65 degrees...horrors! We went to T
ea for Two for lunch (yummmmmmmm), walked around Lincoln Road, and went to The Frieze for sorbet. Then we went to the boardwalk by 41st and Collins and walked and read books. Us and the 80 year old Bubbies and Zaydes. I kid you not. I also watched people jog the boardwalk and got increasingly worried about Sunday. Here's Benjie at the boardwalk.

Then, to continue our reign as Bubbies and Zaydes, we went to dinner at Grill Time. At 5:45 pm. Yes, 5:45. No, we did not have kids with us. But it was either that or 9:30, and we were sleeping at my friend Steph's house that night and wanted to get there earlier rather than later. So we went at 5:45 with the Bubbies, Zaydes, and families with small children. No matter, it was YUM!

Then we took the drive over to Steph and Mary's and had a lovely evening. I bought clothing for my new nephew Yitziey from her neighbor that bought an insane amount of boy's clothing to resell as an investment, we drank Italian Martinis Margaritas, and they mocked me wearing flip flops and I mocked them wearing winter coats. In 65 degree weather. I mixed up her daughters' names. I am still embarrassed. They were gracious about it.

We went to sleep. Day One of vacay...over.


Steph and the kiddies left at like 8ish. We got up, drank the lovely coffee they left us in their very fancy Grind and Brew coffeemaker (note to BENJIE: This would make an excellent gift to your lovely wife), and we headed out to the hotel.

Got to the hotel at 11:30. They told us we couldn't check in until 4. I was not nice. Benjie said I was rude, I say I was merely persistent. Whatevs. We went to lunch at Jerusalem Pizza with Avi and Rachel (their picture will show up later on in the post marathon pics), then we ran to Publix to buy yummy yogurt and other snackies for Shabbos, and got back to the hotel about 1:30, when we were able to check in "early". Benjie says for sure they spit in our glasses and wanted to short sheet our bed. Ha ha.

We then spent the rest of the the pool. Ahhh bliss. I {heart} the pool. Really really really.

Awww aren't we cute? This picture is actually from Monday but go with it.
It's suuuch a nice pool. It has that infinity edge and looks out over the bay. Divine. We went up at about 5:15 to get ready for Shabbos which was at 5:38-amazing how fast you can get ready with no kiddies! Then we went back to the pool, where we hung out with various people (Hi Raphi!) after dinner. We had some really ummm..quality? beverages courtesy of the Camp Simcha Guys. All I can say is that it is just wrong to be mixing neon drinks in Team Lifeline water bottles.


Benjie went to services in the morning, I sat by the pool. We ate lunch. We sat by the pool. Rinse. Repeat.

Small world? We sat with a woman at lunch who carpooled last year with my sister in law Tamar. Who would've thought?

Then Saturday night was the pre-race pasta party. It was nice. There was a nice video. A mom spoke. I spoke last year, remember? It was inspirational.

We went to sleep early-ish. Because Sunday was....


4:00 am wakeup...I was up from 3 am on.
Ate my normal breakfast of champions pre-race...Drakes Cakes. Don't knock it until you've tried it.

And let me tell you, it worked! I ROCKED THE MARATHON! I couldn't believe it. I really hadn't trained anywhere near as much as I should have, and I just plugged along!

Oh wait, backtrack. I got interviewed by the ING people pre-race. Moshe (head of Team Lifeline, my old Chai Lifeline Midwest director) asked me if I could be interviewed. And to say "Team Lifeline/Chai Lifeline" as much as possible. Now I thought I was being interviewed for a Team Lifeline video. Nope. I was interviewed, along with a Crohns/Colitis guy (Team In Training?) by an ING guy. I sou
nded like a bumbling idiot. Sorry, Mo. Crohns Guy? Very smooth. Lots of numbers. I was all like "I run the marathon on Team Lifeline, because, ya know, my son goes to Camp Simcha, we have 230 runners and have raised over a million dollars, etc etc". But I sounded like an idiot. What I wanted to say is: "Crohns guy? Hah! You've got stomach ailments? We've got sick and dying kids! Top that!" Well I can say that because, well, I am a parent of said sick kid.

Back to the run. I really rocked it! Shocking. I plugged along, running the whole time, until mile 7 or 8. I ran up to mile 6 with Rachel and Avi. Hi guys!

Don't they look cute? Well, being as Avi did not train, he did awesome. Ran up to mile 6. When I left them in my dust. Haha. Oh no! The picture is gone. Will reload it tomorrow at work. OK it's back.

Then I ran with another girl up to mile 8 or so (walked a little bit). Then from mile 9 to the end I ran with another girl. Which was good because I was kinda...tired. My time was good. I think it might be better than they gave me. So I sent them a dispute form. Will update as events warrant.

Benjie was waiting for me at mile 11. Here are some pics of random runners.

Hi Ari! Hi Malky! The Benschers have been running on Team Lifeline since its inception 4 years ago. Malky is a speed walker. She speed walked the full marathon. This year she just went for a leisurely jog with her hubby.

Random guy. But aren't us Team Lifeliners sporty?

Another random guy. If you recognize who it is, anyone, let me know!

Oh look! It's me! Post marathon. That's Raphi and another camp guy behind me. I was very sad. I thought I beat Raphi. But alas, he is 21 and young, and I am 31 and old. He beat me. But then again, he did cheat and start in an A corral where there was no congestion. So maybe I beat you, Raphi, because I didn't cheat?? :)

We were back at the hotel by 11 am.

Funny story? There were TEAM LIFELINE shuttles. You know, coach buses with a big Team Lifeline sign in the window?? So we take the whole 45 minute ride back to the hotel. Actually, it was more like an hour due to the bus driver being unable to use his GPS taking us on the scenic route. So we pull up. We're all getting off. This guy looks up at me: "Is this the last stop for the shuttle?" I say to him "This is a TEAM LIFELINE shuttle! Not an ING shuttle" He looks perplexed. I continue: "This is the ONLY stop! But you can ride it all the way back!" Can you imagine running a half marathon and then having to sit on a bus for almost two hours for nothing????? Yikes.

I was showered and in the hot tub by noon.

Where I stayed for the next two hours.

Until the post race victory party, where I ate my body weight in food. I was. so. freaking. famished.

Returned to the pool/hot tub area for another few hours.

Then we went upstairs to the room and snoozed and watched some true crimes show on MSNBC until we went out to Bissalah for dinner.

I had a fatout. No clue what it was. It was a pile of fried dough/feta/mozzarella/black olive/mushroom goodness. And it was good. And soooooooo bad for me. Along with my smoothie made with whole milk. But heck, I'd just run a half marathon. And if I couldn't eat it then, when else could I?

I was asleep by 10:30. And I was wiped.


Woke up 8:30ish. Went down to pool.

Stayed there till 2 pm.

Went to lunch at JP Bistro. YUMMY!

Went to CVS because Shosh told me that they had kid's toothpaste was on sale for $.19. They didn't have any. Boo hoo.

Then we went to the beach. Hi Benjie at the beach!

oh yes...the pulled over story.

We were tootling down Hallendale Beach Blvd or whatever it's called. Next thing we know, a police man is standing in the middle of the road holding a radar gun and waving us over. Benjie looks at me, perplexed. We honestly had not a clue what we'd done. It seems that we were in a school zone. Speed limit 15. We were going 30. We looked around and noticed that everyone was going....15. As in crawling down the street. We told him we were from out of town and he took pity on us and let us go. It was that bright yellow car, I tell ya!

So after the beach we went to the airport and returned the the freaking frozen tundra of Chicago. What is wrong with us? Why do we live here? We're idiots.

And that, my dears, was Sara and Benjie's big marathon adventure.

I am proud to report that, aside for the 2:37:31 that I was running the marathon, I wore my Fit Flops. The entire time.

Oh and Benjie said I should have split this up over a few posts. But I love y'all and figured I'd give it all to you at once. But I'm not sure if I'm posting tomorrow!


Shosh said...

that insanely long blog post with all the pictures was like a good drug. i want moooooore. btw k told me tonight that the toothpaste is gross. Only D likes it. So dont feel so bad :)

Anonymous said...

wow. you really are so amazing to indulge us in words and pictures that i will overlook the tease of all those restaurants...although we will be in FL in a few weeks and might actually have a chance at ONE meal out - what's your top choice?

oh, and of course it goes without saying that you are amazing for the whole marathon thing too. you go on that time dispute thing; you deserve every second!

glad you are back. and that you didn't listen to benjie and split the post up - that would have just been torture.

Rachel Ann said...

Thank you for stopping by on my SITS day last week. I appreciated all the bloggy love! Sorry I'm so long in returning the favor!!!

Nahum and Rebecca said...

oh Sara, you make me laugh. And I think we are spelling Yitzy's name with a y on the end, though Tamar also seems to think it should be Yitzie.

michelle prero said...

awesome post! i am starving now, though...... :)

Shira said...

I think my favorite part of that whole post was how you went to CVS, on your vacation, to get some bargains. So classic. It looks like you had tons of fun...welcome back to the arctic zone.

elisha said...

Thanks for posting-I was feeling so much withdrawal I had to start my own blog!! Seriously, I'm glad you had a great time and accomplished something important. And I totally agree with you-we are crazy for living here.

Raphi said...

First of all thanks for the first shout out, as for the drinks they might have been a little strong (ok fine a little nasty) but i liked them in the Team Lifeline bottle. Finally, as i recall someone else also cheated with the corrals, I'm just a better cheater and started all the way by the first corral :-).

Rach said...

Oh my that was awesome. Sounds great. I can't believe how fast you finished, I am seriously impressed.
So, you want to go running with me Sunday morning? :) Just kidding!

chaviva said...

Welcome back! I'm amazed at all of you marathon running moms out there. I don't know how you find the time to train. My big exercise for the day was walking a few houses from my car (the nerve of someone to take my spot in front of my house). I have to agree with Shira, my favorite part of this post was your little CVS trip. I can't believe you were gonna haul back toothpaste from Miami. You are too funny.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the play-by-play! Very entertaining. Kudos for running, for finishing, and for taking a vacation that you deserve. And for raising money that helps our kids go to camp and all the other stuff CL does.

Michelle B.

Stephanie said...

911They were italian margaritas, not martinis.
And on one but you is worried about the Confusion of the Girls. But seriously? you have pictures of runners YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW and BAT (OR MY KITCHEN!) don't get a photo.

Oh, and I laughed a lot reading this. Glad you had fun. Mary ate your Grill Time leftovers. She didn't know what it was made out of - she guessed lamb -was pretty sure it was not pork. :)

DESJ and Company said...

Sorry, Margaritas. Ummm you are talking to the most unknowledgeable drink person EVER.
And I need a pic of your kitchen-I realized after you left that WE TOOK NO PICTURES! Yikes.
It was lamb. I wasn't crazy over it-it tasted sooo strong. But it was still better than anything in stinky Chicago!

OK I give in. You cheat better than me. Hmph.

DESJ and Company said...

Oh and Anonymous?
My recommendation is a place we didn't even go!
China Bistro in the Waterways if you want meat. I personally think it's better than Grill Time. But at Grill Time they give you lots and lots of free salads. Which is very fun. But at China Bistro you can eat outside.
or Bissalah or Tea for Two if you want dairy.

Orah said...

Welcome back and Congrats on your run. Who cares about your time - you RAN A MARATHON!!! I can no longer run, I can hardly walk, I just waddle. And thanks for all the Restaurant suggestions, I will IY"H be there in 2 weeks.

Anonymous said...

hey sara,
so happy that you liked JP bistro- it was a good choice by me right?? i love your blog and i love my fit flops even more!! it was a great weekend and you made godo time in marathon.
NY has much better restaurants than miami though....

Gretchen said...

I just can't believe you went to CVS on vacation!!
Glad it went well...hope you raised lots for Chai Lifeline (and let them know they could cut costs with a few less mailings...) :)

Anonymous said...

thanks for the restaurant info; we are always in FL for Pesach and never get to eat out, but we are hoping for one dinner away from the kids when we are there next we want to be sure to pick a good place!
Debbie (formerly known as annonymous)