Friday, May 30, 2008

Swimming with "Fish"


I am blissing out.

I am in Austin, Texas--the Boulder of the Lone Star State--ostensibly on "firm" business and fulfilling my continuing education requirement as a board certified law dweeb. But the highlight of my days here is immersing myself in the active, multisport weirdness. I'm groovin' to the vibe dude.

Yesterday was an early morning run with Carrie from Tri to be Funny and her running posse. Then, in the evening, I bicycle commuted to an indoor cycling class at T3, Carrie's triathlon training group. It was over an hour of high cadence trainer work in a warehouse with only a big ass fan to cool us.

Good times, baby.

Then it was dinner outdoors at a hip, local restaurant with Carrie and the Hubster.

How much would you pay? But don't answer yet, because this morning, we had the ultimate Austin, multisport morning. We donned our wet suits and swam open water at 65 degree Barton Springs, followed by breakfast, again outdoors, at Austin Java.

And the ultimate, while at Barton Springs, I swam with professional triathlete, Andrea Fisher, a/k/a "Fish."

We both entered the water and stroked powerfully in the pre dawn light. The cool, crisp water flowed over our taut muscles. Our hearts and bodies warmed to the task of being fully alive, together, here in the water. Lungs filled with air as we rotated rhythmically toward the sky--breathing in, breathing out, in . . . out. . . . in . . . out . . . faster and more powerfully, until we reached the end of the springs where she looked meaningfully to me, and we glanced at Desiree Ficker on the deck. I thought for a moment her eyes glistened with a tear.

OK, so that last bit is kind of an exaggeration . . . . in the sense that it is completely false. We actually just saw Fish starting her workout as we were finishing ours. That said, if I have an impossibly unattainable imaginary life about Fish and Des, I have a potentially attainable imaginary life about coming to this community. I am aching to live in a place where it is "normal" to see training groups going hard every morning, where I can walk to Whole Foods, bike to work, run around Town Lake, and swim in 65 degree open water every morning of the week. This instead of a place where I have to drive to Kroger, commute 30 miles before dawn in a car to work in order not to die on my bicycle, run through liquid smog-filled air, and drive 45 minutes to swim in open water the temperature of human piss.

Not that I'm bitter or cranky.

***Latest Editorial Edition***

Just came back from lunch and getting my bike tweaked at Jack and Adams Bicycles. The valet at the hotel, while helping me get my bike out of the trunk, actually recognized it as a tri bike, and engaged in knowledgable small talk about the merits and drawbacks of carbon fiber as a material for building bicycle frames.

What a town.

13 comments:

21stCenturyMom said...

I can feel that itch. There's the life you live in the community you love with the friends you've made and the stuff you have. And then there is Austin. Good luck with that *wink wink*

Just remember that standing on the cliff looking down at the water is really scary and falling through the air feels a little uncertain but hitting the water and popping up to the surface is awesome! Wheee!!!!

Fe-lady said...

When you find that utopia...let us know. We will be your neighbors!

Amy said...

That sounds like home! Only warmer.

I have to give a CLE course on Injury Biomechanics for Lawyers in Oregon in July. At least our stuff has video and gore aka fun and entertaining.

KCWoodhead said...

I'm RIGHT there with you! I'm just upset I didn't discover the multisport world of Austin until my last year there, and even then I thought a 12 mile bike ride was long and didn't own a wetsuit, so Barton Springs was out of the question in the AM.

Sarah said...

One of my tri buddies just moved from Houston to Austin. I can barely read her blog anymore through all the green that I see.... So jealous...

Andra Sue said...

Eh, I can't say I like Austin all that much. It's kind of dirty, and parts of it smell just as bad as Houston. Plus, there's all those weirdo hippies at t.u. ;)

Fun to visit for a couple days, though!

Too bad you didn't come to CapTex last weekend--your wildest dreams could have come true! I was within 10 feet of Desiree Ficker several times and saw Andrea Fisher exit the swim. Of course, I didn't know who either of them were at the time...eventually, I got back to the hotel and looked 'em up.

Kim said...

that's it, we are moving to hawaii!

pinkgurugal said...

i concur about austin...
but what, the 1 mile bike loop at memorial park and the open water swim at twin lakes don't compare??

Tri to Be Funny said...

Oh my God!! Forget Ficker and Fisher...You worked out with Tri to be Funny and her husband?!?! Now, THAT's awesome!! :-)

Hope your retirement plans get you here early. There will be plenty more mornings at Austin Java (let's just hope we don't always have to valet our cars!)

tri-mama said...

I'm sending you a shingle- move greyhound! Move!

jplumley said...

Did you say big ass fan or Big Ass Fan? Did it look a little something like this?

Lisa said...

Love, love, love Austin. I miss it too. :(

CoachLiz said...

Wow, sounds like a great trip for training with a little bit of law thrown in for good measure.