Day 143 – On my journey to the Ironman
Thursday, November 24th
On Thanksgiving morning the alarm began its melodious tune at 3 AM (One of my favorite birthday gifts was an alarm clock that brings me gently into the day, with a slowly brightening light, aromatherapy beads and a soothing sound of my choice. Much more pleasant way to start the day than with a jarring noise blaring in my ear.) We were on the road to the airport by 3:50.
It was smooth sailing on our flight from
Our “front of the plane” seats had us first in line to get our bags through customs and we quickly located our ground transportation, a shuttle provided by Apple Vacations. Unfortunately, we were not the only Apple customers on the shuttle and were left standing curbside for an hour in the
We checked in at our resort hotel, Iberostar Cozumel, peeled off our jeans in exchange for a pair of shorts, and grabbed a taxi for the 20 minute, $20 ride back into town for the Ironman check in and packet pickup.
Packet pickup was a breeze--no lines, no waiting—and our swag included a really nice Ironman cycling jacket. Score! The expo, however, was not as easy to navigate as it was surprisingly sparse on vendors and space, yet densely packed with people. In addition to locating CO2 cartridges, I was on the hunt for a new running visor, a 140.6 magnet and a Cozumel Ironman t-shirt. I ended up going one for three. Found a visor I liked (though later wasted some energy second-guessing my choice) but there were no magnets and no shirts available in my size. (A common occurrence at these male-dominated races.) I had my eye on a gray, women’s-fit tee (the only one, it seemed, that was a women’s specific design, cut with shorter sleeves and a more narrow waist instead of suited for SpongeBob Square Pants) but I was told I’d have to wait to purchase it as it was for “finishers only.” I considered a triathlon necklace but decided against paying $30 for the cheaply made item and also admired some triathlon art, but could not fathom a way to easily get it home intact and settled for the company’s business card instead.
Race packets, CO2 cartridges and a visor in hand, our next stop was the TriBike Transport tent a few blocks away (this was, at first, a bit difficult to locate) to pick up our bikes that had been shipped a week in advance. Starving, we stopped at a market along the way and bought a box of granola bars and bottled water. We each ate three granola bars, polishing off the box, as we made our way to TriBike.
Our “matching” Felt bikes (this a result of the bike shop where we bought them giving us a great deal for purchasing two) were quickly located, the pedals were re-installed and we found a larger cab to take us, and our bikes, back to the hotel.
Finally back at Iberostar, we stowed our bikes and headed to the resort’s Mexican restaurant for dinner. Still on the wagon, we sipped a Dos XX and were surprised to find the Mexican food at the Mexican restaurant in
Ironman in three days . . .