Thursday, November 22, 2012

Final approach

The sky turned the dark grey of disappointment shortly before I left the flat today, and before I'd got to the ground floor the rain was falling. Singapore has relatively short showers, but the rain comes down with great force, so that an umbrella becomes superfluous. If it hasn't been snatched away by the wind, it still only provides shelter against the rain as it falls down; the rain bounces hard enough on the ground to soak your calves anyway.

I've only been caught out in the rain once, but that was brutal: ten minutes of hard rain and I was soaked to the skin (which would be normal) but freezing cold as well, which is something you aren't accustomed to, as a rule, in Singapore. Unless you spent all your time in shopping malls, with your face pressed up against the air con vents.

Today I didn't run, because I'm tapering down before the marathon, and that made me feel very tired today. Having three consecutive teleconferences didn't help, and as the day went on and it grew ever colder, my neck began to kink up, making me fear a predictable workplace injury would invalidate me from being able to run. I pulled my scarf out from a desk drawer, and, with entirely inappropriate attire for a tropical country, survived the rest of the day.

Apart from Death By Meetings, I've spent most of today building a process in a database to do Clever Things. They're not really that clever, until you need to do them twenty million times a week, at which point you may find yourself glad that you learned how to program a database a decade ago. It's a bit painful because I'm trying to replicate somebody else's spreadsheet, a formidable artifact that takes ten minutes to open even on my savage beast of a computer, and I'll tweak my process and rerun it and gradually approach what the spreadsheet does, but it's something that rewards patience and pedantry. I only excel at one of the two.

Mostly though I'm just trying to avoid thinking or doing too much; I'm trying to preserve my energy for Sunday's run, and that means thinking and doing as little as possible. Fortunately in Singapore my wife can fulfil those roles, but Osaka is a whole different story. 60 hours till the race begins...


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