Latitude 17N

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Countdown to Carino Nevis Triathlon 2007

Well it's that time of year again. Time for the Carino Nevis Triathlon. This year Jaime and I are both doing the Olympic distance race. This would be a 1500 meter swim, 40k (25 mile) bike and a 10k (6.2 mile) run. I am estimating a finish time somewhere around 3 to 3 1/2 hours. 3 being a really good time. 3 1/2 being an optimistic finish. I can probably do the swim in between 30 and 40 minutes depending on the seas. The bike will take me 1:30 - 2:00 depending on wind. My typical 10k race is just under an hour but since I will be coming off a bike after pedaling 25 miles and pedaling 25 miles after swimming almost a mile, I may not be running an optimal 10k. I'm in it to finish alive...not to win. Although I would like to have a good time since I have been training hard for this one. My friend Wendy (of Wendy's Deli) got hit by a bus on her training ride today. That is very scary. She cut her arm and got some stitches, banged up her shoulder and ankles and her hand is looking pretty much like a baseball glove right about now. She is hoping to recover enough to do the race on Sunday but if she can't she's been training for a 1/2 Ironman which will be in St. Croix in May. I'll keep my fingers crossed to see her out there on Sunday. We will also be having the kids triathlon on Sunday. Last Saturday was our last training session before the big race and sadly had our lightest turnout yet. Hopefully they will all show up on Sunday! We have a reporter from Triathlete magazine coming to cover the event this year which is exciting. What is not exciting is that we will have a light turnout this year due to the airline ticket prices going through the roof (Jaime and I had priced tickets for the end of March to come home and they were almost 700US for a ONE WAY ticket!!!). The World Cricket Cup is messing everything up. They are capitalizing as much as they can. Oh well, we'll still have about 40-50 people racing which is a lot! Well keep reading, I posted a lot on here tonight so keep scrolling down.......

Four Seasons Villa 1612

OK, this house is so set up for relaxing I don't know how they can afford to live there. They must not ever go to work because if it were me I would never get off the lounge areas that are all over the house! It is so cool! And what a view! The rumor is that this house is owned by Eric Clapton's manager or someone on his staff. All I know is whoever owns this house has a lot of dough.

Another cool house tour house

This house also on the tour was really cool. It is not your typical Caribbean home but really cool anyway. The beams on the ceiling of the kitchen were from an old barn in Vermont which was built in 1865. The interior had cypress and white cedar paneling and hard wood floors. Not many homes in Nevis have hard wood floors! The owner and designer, John Cacase is very eccentric and liked telling his stories as people wandered through the house.

House and Garden Tour

The Nevis Historical Society (or hysterical society as Grammy says) had a house and garden tour on Saturday. Last year I didn't know about it until it was almost over and missed the whole thing. This year I was sure to buy a ticket. There were 6 houses on the tour. The one I have pictures of here is in Paradise Estates. It is owned by a Guy named Greg Slagon who is an interesting man. He lives here part-time and is easy to spot in his big diesel golf cart type car things. His house is amazing. The outside of the pool room has amazing stone and brick work with native shells incorporated into the side of the structure. It is really cool. I love the color scheme of the interior too...look familiar?

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Movie Night

Friday night our Spouses of Students Club hosted a movie night over at the MUA pool. The SOS president's husband Eric brought his movie projector with him to the island. It is quite the nice little set-up. They hung a sheet on the fence around the tennis court and projected it on there. We watched Open Season which was really funny. There were about 5 or 6 families that showed up to view the movie. We had popcorn and candy and drinks. It is a little bit different from being in a drive-in because you are just sitting there under the stars with lightning bugs flying over the screen and bats swooping past your face. That was a little bit weird but it was a nice change of pace.

On Saturday we had a 10k race in the morning. It was so hot! It's starting to heat up over here again. I did it in less than an hour which is good for me especially since we actually ran almost 11k. After that we had the kids triathlon training which went pretty well. The kids didn't have as much fun this time because we were testing them to see how far they can swim. The kids who couldn't swim did not get much help. We only have 5 that can not swim. We took the rest of them out to the deeper area (chest level) so they would have to swim and not run in the water. They tend to do that which is cheating! We need to know how far they can each swim so we can put them in the correct level for the triathlon in March. I think we're making them nervous. I wonder how many will show up. I asked them if they were all doing the triathlon in March and a lot of them said "Maybe". I told them that wasn't a very optimistic answer. After the tri training we went over to the MUA pool where the Muslim Students Association was having a barbecue. It only cost 2EC which is the equivalent of about .75 cents in US money so I couldn't pass it up. We got a small piece of chicken, a chicken sandwich and salads (potato and macaroni). I was starving since I hadn't eaten since breakfast and had done that run earlier in the day. PLUS they had a bounce house and a blow-up water slide for the kids. Julian had a great time over there. And the pool is clean!!!

Last night we were all tired so we didn't do anything. I had to work on my final projects for my classes that are due today. I have been working on them for weeks! I posted one yesterday and the other one will get posted today. I think it is done I just need to look it over again to make sure there aren't any mistakes. Then I start two new classes on Monday. This coming week I am helping out the art teachers at the school. The older classes are going to do macrame! How exciting!!!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Kids Triathlon!

Julian was in a kids triathlon today. We have been working with about 30 or so kids for the past 5 weeks. Every Saturday we get together and split the kids in groups. They rotate around to the three different tri stations. Swim, Bike and Run. I have been working in the water with the kids trying to get some to learn how to swim. There are only about 8 who do not know how to swim. So far almost all of those 8 are floating which is a big step. In bike training the kids do obstacle courses and a bit of distance training and in the run they do a lot of stretching and sprinting. Winston and Meike (intern at bike shop from Holland) help out with the bike, James Weekes (one of our triathlon faves) trains the kids on running and I am assisted by a girl in pre-med 1 named Sydney. She is a great swimmer and is really good with the kids. Kristina Stoney is our current peace corps guru and she and Meike got this whole thing together. Kristina floats from station to station and fits in where she is needed. The kids came up with a name for their club which is "The Cheetas - Triathletes of Tomorrow" They are getting t-shirts made up which the kids raised money for. So the triathlon today went well. There were about 25-30 kids there which is more than I can say for the adult race! The kids were split into heats depending on age and each heat had a different distance. For Julian's group they had to swim 50 meters, bike around a track (that is probably a bit over 1/4 mile) twice and run around it once. Julian did really well. He swam the whole way and did his two loops on the bike where he struggled a little bit because his bike is so small. His friend Collin was ahead of him on the bike but they ran together and near the end Julian told Collin they needed to sprint to the finish but Collin stayed back and Julian ran as hard as he could for the last 300 meters or so. He had a great day and was very proud of himself. This training is all leading up to the big triathlon in March. They will have a race there before the big one which will be on the road which will be closed down for the event.

Jaime and I also had a training triathlon today. Our race had between 12 and 15 people. About half women and half men. We swam 650 meters, biked 20k and ran 5k. Jaime forgot his shoes so he couldn't run. He had goggle problems so I passed him in the swim. I was either 2nd or 3rd out of the water. I had a good swim time. I have been working with Janine who is here from Holland. She is a triathlete extraorinaire. She comes to train and do the big event in march. She also volunteers her time every afternoon to train the club members on swimming. She gave me some pointers which helped me out a ton! She told me the same thing a lot of people have been telling me but just didn't explain it right and it didn't make sense how to correct it. She told me exactly what to do to correct it and right away I fixed it and could tell the difference. So I biked and ran and it was hot and hot and hot! That is our last training race of the season. The big race is in March and I am going to be doing the Olympic distance this year which is double the one I have done in the past. It will be a 1500m swim, 40k bike and 10k run. So wish me luck! I'm going to need it. It will be very competitive because most of the women I know are doing that race.

We also participated in the first ever Tourism Week Bike Race. I did the intermediate which was 30 miles. Jaime did the expert which was 50 miles. It was hard and hilly and long. It took me a bit ovesr 2 hours to finish and I was second to last in my race. Oh well, someones gotta pull in the rear. Jaime was also second to last in his race. We had a group over from St. Maarten who were very good and took in the two top finishing spots. We also did a 14k run the weekend before which was good for me to keep up with training for a 1/2 marathon I am doing in May. My time was good and that was the longest I have ever run. So, we have been keeping very active. The club has a lot of events set up because a big group of them are going to St. Croix in May for the 1/2 ironman triathlon. Next weekend we have a 10k run, then we have the triathlon two weeks after that. The following week we have the cross channel swim which goes from Oualie Beach to St. Kitts. Then there is a 16k run and a 20k run before the end of March. I'm going to be tired when we get back to NH!

Julian is doing really well in school. His new teacher is doing a great job with his class and she really seems to like Julian. He has been behaving well in class which I am happy about and getting along with his classmates. He is going to be out of school for two weeks starting March 9th. They are giving them their spring break early because the Cricket World Cup is being hosted over in St. Kitts. I think it 's silly to take the kids out of school for that but what can you do. He will not start back until the last week in March. Then we will be coming home either at the end of March or the beginning of April.