7/31/08

Trip!

YAY!!! Going back to Clearwater. Actually, to new port richey since we are staying at my parents house. I will be there until wed and Karel is heading back on sun afternoon. My mom and dad are flying up to PA today to visit my brother for the next 3 days so Karel and I are "cat sitting" for my parents. Of course, we have to bring Smudla for her first road trip since we moved. This should be interesting.

I just got finished packing up the car. Lots of stuff for a quick trip. We each have a duffel bag of clothes, my transition bag of race gear and nutrition, two bikes, a liter box and hopefully I won't forget the cat. I have pick up Karel at the Trek store at 7pm when he gets off work and then we are on the road for our "short" 3 1/2 hour ride. I am going to try to squeeze in one more homework assignment in the next hour (due mon) and that should finish me up until who-knows-when and I can have a little break from the computer.

I'm really looking forward to this weekend. Wedding stuff!! This is really the big focus of the trip (besides Karel riding with his friends and me racing). We have a busy day tomorrow and sat but that's ok...part of getting married. Going to the reception restaurant tomorrow to go over the lunch menu and pick out colors for chair covers (which I think are so silly, but it is in the package) and other linens. Then to pick up my packet for the race and I CAN'T wait to see some familiar triathlete faces. Sat I have the race in the morning and then to cake tasting....yum! Karel and I both want a "healthier" cake and we actually picked a baker who specializes in dietetics. We are thinking something with berries and/or fruit around the outside of the cake and once we decide on the flavor of the inside (don't think Karel is going to go for my boring love of vanilla) I will let Chef Nelson go to work on making it "healthy" and yummy. Sat evening we have dinner plans with the Gearlink guys which I am sure Karel is going to be happy to be with his old cycling buddies. Sun looks pretty open for me but Karel is SOOOO ready to get to San Antonio for some hills. As for mon and tues when my mom and dad get back, I will be meeting with the photographer, discussing flowers and getting my dress hemmed. Then on Wed, back to JAX.

This morning I told Karel I had no time to save animals as I headed out the door at 6:40am. I was a little pressed for time this morning since I had to be at Jacksonville University at 9:30 to meet with my mentor for my Food Service course. I did a nice 20 mile ride with a few pacing intervals and then ran for 2.5 miles, with the first mile a little slower than my 5K race pace. I am excited for the race and I hope to have a good performance. The energy of being with my friends should be a great incentive to race fast.

I just got this email and I thought I'd pass the picture and story along...pretty incredible!



Meet Molly. She's a grey speckled pony who
was abandoned by her owners when Hurricane Katrina hit southern Louisiana. She spent weeks on her own before finally being rescued and taken to a farm where abandoned animals were stockpiled.While there, she was attacked by a pit bull terrier and almost died. Her gnawed right front leg became infected, and her vet went to LSU for help, but LSU was overwhelmed, and this pony was a welfare case.You know how that goes.

But after surgeon Rustin Moore met Molly, he changed his mind. He saw how the pony was careful to lie down on different sides so she didn't seem to get sores, and how she allowed people to handle her. She protected her injured leg. She constantly shifted her weight and didn't overload her good leg. She was a smart pony with a serious survival ethic.

Moore agreed to remove her leg below the knee,and a temporary artificial limb was built. Molly walked out of the clinic and her story really begins there.

'This was the right horse and the right owner,'Moore insists. Molly happened to be a one-in-a-million patient. She's tough as nails,but sweet, and she was willing to cope with pain.She made it obvious she understood that she was in trouble. The other important factor, according to Moore, is having a truly committed and compliant owner who is dedicated to providing the daily care required over the lifetime of the horse.

Molly's story turns into a parable for life in post-Katrina Louisiana. The little pony gained weight,and her mane finally felt a comb. A human prosthesis designer built her a leg.

The prosthetic has given Molly a whole new life, Allison Barca DVM,
Molly's regular vet, reports. And she asks for it. She will put her little limb out, and come to you and let you know that she wants you to put it on. Sometimes she wants you to take it off too. And sometimes, Molly gets away from Barca. 'It can be pretty bad when you can't catch a three-legged horse,' she laughs.

Most important of all, Molly has a job now. Kay,the rescue farm owner, started taking Molly to shelters, hospitals, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. Anywhere she thought that people needed hope. Wherever Molly went, she showed people her pluck. She inspired people, and she had a good time doing it.

'It's obvious to me that Molly had a bigger role to play in life,? Moore said. 'She survived the hurricane,she survived a horrible injury, and now she is giving hope to others.'Barca concluded, 'She's not back to normal, but she's going to be better. To me, she could be a symbol for New Orleans itself.'