Sunday afternoon. Cape Town. Arrived some time after midday, stopped at the shops for some provisions, found my way onto campus, got my room key, dumped my stuff. Sat down. Plugged in my laptop... and found that I was not yet registered on the campus network. So no internet. Not the end of the world, but I was planning on doing some work this afternoon. So much for filling in the required forms beforehand so that everything would just work when I arrived. Humph!
Anyway, it has been a pretty productive weekend. After doing a couple of errands yesterday morning I went along to the Pick 'n Pay Hypermarket and met with Pushie Pillay. She had kindly agreed to sponsor me some of the provisions for the race. I walked away with an obscene number of sachets of tuna, a couple of boxes of soya mince and two packets of dried pears. If I manage to eat even half of all that tuna I am pretty sure that my DNA will be morphing into something with fins.
Claire was working at school all morning, but when she came home I roped her into finishing off my customised gaiters. These look awesome and I can't wait to try them out on a trail around Table Mountain. Then we divided up all the food into rations for the five days and labelled the bags. The nominal food mass for the complete race is 4 kg. I have just a little bit over that, maybe 230 grams over the limit. Don't know how strict they are going to be about that threshold. Hopefully I can take all of that, otherwise I will have to seriously think about what I can discard. By the time this was all sorted and my bags were packed it was late afternoon, just enough time for a quick nap before I took myself out for an evening trot. I was keeping my backpack dry for the flight, so I ran without it. Wow, it makes a huge difference running without a pack. The uphills felt as light as air... Well, as light as they could considering that somewhere along the line I have done something to my right knee. It is not very sore. And it does not really affect me when I am running, but when I am sitting or lying around there is a dull ache. Mostly behind the knee, but also on the sides around the front. I think that the latter is some sort of referred pain because when I rub around the knee I can feel the sore spot and it is in the middle behind my kneecap, where one of the calf muscles joins onto the back of the knee.
Back to the present though, I am on a quest for coffee bags. I am pretty sure that a few years ago you could get bags of decent coffee (analogous to tea bags). These would be perfect for the run. But there does not seem to be any such thing available any more. There are two dodgy products, one of which is 25% coffee and the other is 65% coffee... and the balance of the contents is just useless crap. Still hoping to find something in a speciality coffee shop. Also battling to find ice packs in Rondebosch. None of the shops have any. Not even freezer bricks. So I bought a big sachet of washing up liquid. The shape is right and hopefully it will retain the chill without freezing.
I should be working on my lectures now. Mine is the first of the year, so I get to set the tone. Not feeling very motivated right now, so I am fiddling with a few other things. I reckon after a shower and another cup of tea I will be ready to put my mind to it.