Yes, a full report on my race is still forthcoming. Be patient, friends, fellow athletes, and any progeny of mine who may be reading this a hundred years from now.
Fast-forward to awards...
In addition to the finisher's medal and finisher's shirt (yellow, like Lance Armstrong's Yellow Jersey):
Won my age group (female 50-54) -- a very classy curved, beveled glass pane etched with the ChesapeakeMan Ultra Distance Triathlon Logo and Female 50-59 Champion (the age group info said 50-54 but who's counting, I won it.) And a copy of James Michener's epic novel, Chesapeake, which I read maybe 15 years ago and enjoyed to the point of mesmerization.
Won the Female Grand Masters (everyone over 50) award -- a ceramic earthenware-type plaque with the USATriathlon logo, in a holder with a sculpture of a champion with arms raised in victory, and an engraved plate in the base with the legend :
USA Triathlon 2005 Mid Atlantic Regional
Ultra Distance Championship
Female Grand Masters Champion
AND.... my name was drawn for one of 6 door prizes, each one an X-Terra Triathlon wetsuit.
Well, I called the X-Terra Wetsuit Company and gave them the reference code on the order form I'd been given (it said "Eagle 1"), and they told me that code had expired. And that I should have a gift certificate, along with the form. And that it was for a $100 discount, not a whole wetsuit. And that the EagleMan race was in June. I said I knew that, but that the race I had just done, where I had received the gift, was ChesapeakeMan, put on by the same organization as EagleMan, and that I had just gotten it on Sunday. This surprised him very much. So I've e-mailed the RD and he's checking into it.
~Sigh~ It's always something... even if the wetsuit deal doesn't pan out, I'm still so happy with my race it doesn't matter. It's not like I have some kind of right to a free wetsuit. That was an unexpected plus. I'll be mildly disappointed if it doesn't fly but I won't be freaked out. (But I bet the RD will if all 6 that were given out turn out to be no good.)
I feel much better today, hardly tired, hardly sore. Went and got my eyelashes dyed, which I've been wanting to try... don't bother unless your lashes are blond or white. I can't see that it made any difference. But that, too, was not an important thing. It cost $20 so it's kind of like anything else you spend twenty bucks on and then turn out not to like all that much. The lady was nice to talk to and when I told her I couldn't see any difference she re-did them. So I left her a tip and thanked everyone and went and bought more mascara. I also got some stuff for Journey at PetSmart (a book on re-educating your dog if it does things like chew, dig, pull, etc. -- I know how to do basic training but problem behaviors that are instinctive to dogs are trickier.) And went to Barnes and Noble and got a book called The Messies' Manual on getting organized, and an Inside Triathlon magazine, and 2 (count 'em, 2) TrailRunner magazines. I'm wanting to keep trying new things and probably longer distances (although I doubt I'll ever attempt something as nuts as a Double Ironman or something.)
Since I got home from that expedition I've been cleaning out our truck. Cleaning the carpeting and upholstering with foam cleaner, vacuuming it, brushing out the dog hair that didn't come out with the vac, spraying it with Febreeze (one of my water bottles spilled who knows how long ago and it smells like wet carpet in there.) I'm letting it dry out now with the doors all open.
And while it dries out, I'm typing this, and thinking seriously about registering next month for Ironman Florida in November 2006. I am so sorry my Ironman is over. I had such a wonderful day and so much fun. There's no way I can say "I'll never do that again." It was hard but not nearly as hard as I'd expected. It was so extremely gratifying, not just finishing, but the whole journey.