A Bad Morning Practice Run and Bookfest
In the early hours of May 10, I went to the kitchen earlier and hoped to be able to start eating dinner at 2 AM, but it was 2:15 AM when I did, after also talking a little to dad and then forgetting to make the tea while working on the salad or slicing bread and therefore setting the water to boil when it was already late, which added some time. And I was struggling to hold off a breakdown while working on the salad and slicing bread, and the fact that dad was awake and around definitely didn’t help. But I somehow managed it, at least to some extent, and when I did start eating I had some of the old peanut butter, to see whether it was still good. It had hardened, but otherwise seemed fine, the other thing that I put on the bread that night being more of a concern, since I had kept it for far too long and it was starting to have a strange taste, and the gas that appeared right away and the way my stomach felt after eating indicated that it had probably been right at the limit of causing worse problems. Either way, I finished eating at 2:50 AM and gave up on the idea of shaving, but even so it was 4:35 AM when I got in bed, after taking way too long to get everything ready for the morning, even more so after deciding to go straight to Auchan after the run, to get bread for dad, so I had to stuff bags and money in the pocket of my tights, though I didn’t also take a mask.
The alarm was set to ring at 8:15 AM, but I woke up at 8 AM, when the computer did the daily backup, and decided to do the tiny exercise routine at that point, though I then waited for the alarm, possibly even falling asleep again just before it rang. Then I got up and had the usual stuff, the apple being the last of the Fuji ones that I still had, even if it was smaller, and the sweet thing consisting of two of those wheat things, one with honey and the other with jam. I also took all of the supplements, including the double dose of iron that I was just switching to that day, for the last five days before the race… And I guess it pretty much counted as taking a double dose of the one with potassium and magnesium too, since I had taken the previous day’s shortly before going to bed. Either way, I unsurprisingly didn’t leave much of anything in the toilet and went out at 9:45 AM, wearing the full running gear, with some things in the pocket of my tights, and an undershirt. The reported temperature was 11-12°C, increasing a little after that but possibly by just 1°C by the time I finished.
The time was 48:17.07, with sector times of 4:12.85, 5:16 (5:15.19), 5:59 (5:58.97), 4:33.12, 5:05.53, 5:56 (5:55.85), 4:31 (4:30.59), 5:02.56, 5:50 (5:49.38) and 1:53.03, making for lap times of 15:27.01, 15:34.50 and 15:23 (15:22.53). The first sector was five seconds slower than it should have been, since I pushed hard from the start, and while the one problem caused by people and the soggy lane might have caused most of that loss of time, there were no such explanations for that bad sector two and I realized that even the chance of staying under 48 minutes was slipping away, and when I barely stayed under six minutes on sector three despite trying to recover that lost time, the target became to just stay under 49 minutes. Still, after sector two and three of lap two were less bad, I thought of 48:30 and tried to push. It seemed like I had a shot after sector one of lap three, even more so after sector two, and I kept pushing in order to be safe at the end of the lap, and since I was I didn’t really push on the final sector anymore. But the result remains poor even in itself, and when it comes to such final practice runs, if you exclude the one that came before the 2021 half marathon, when I was yet to do much about the anemia and swollen feet, then this is the worst one since the very first one, from 2017…
There weren’t many people, so there was some weaving and going the long way around, but the only notable issue was right on the first sector, when I caught two guys with three dogs just when we were all coming out from under the bridge and had to make my way around them, slowing to some extent. On the other hand, the lane was soggy in plenty of places, so I avoided what I could, and there was more damage as well, including a badly damaged spot on sector three, though they seemed to have fixed the spot that was early on sector two. Otherwise, some pain that was likely reflected from my back appeared soon after I started running and I tried to snap my back, but it diminished only slowly. And later I started feeling that the back of my left thigh tended to contract, possibly because I was still sparing that ankle. And there was some wind as well, but the main problem was that I just couldn’t go any faster.
After the run, I first had a look in Supeco and then also checked the expiring products from that Mega Image, then I picked up another one of those bottles that go towards that 10 RON voucher from Penny and continued to Auchan, leaving that bottle outside when I got there. After washing my hands, I got bread for dad, having no problems with the self-checkout until I was done, at which point it said that assistance was required. But I was already done and the receipt was printed, so I caught the eye of an employee, just to let her know that something was going on, and walked away, taking a moment to arrange the bread a little better after leaving the checkout area and then also retrieving that bottle before continuing to Penny. But I didn’t find anything to get from there, so I just put my things in a cabinet and then retrieved them, putting them once again in a cabinet when I got to Kaufland. From there, I got a coconut that was among the spoiling products and some yogurt, having no problems with the self-checkout and then retrieving what I had in the cabinet and arranging everything. By then, it had gotten cloudy and chillier, but I had nothing to do about that, so I also checked that non-stop Mega Image, just putting my things in a cabinet and then retrieving them, and then also went to Carrefour, once again putting everything in a cabinet and getting a couple of things, then retrieving what I had in the cabinet and arranging.
So I went to all of those places without a mask, and I’ve done something similar again since then, in large part because so few people still wear one, and most of those who do are old, so instead of acting as a layer of protection when it came to interacting with people, which noticeably reduced my anxiety during these past three years, wearing one now seems to no longer be socially acceptable and makes me stand out, so it tends to worsen the stress and anxiety… At a time when my mental state is so bad anyway.
Either way, I got back just before 3 PM, had lunch, and then I struggled and finally managed to make another call that has to do with what I can’t get myself to write about. But it was as pointless as anything else I’ve tried to do about it, before or since… And it made me eat a box of caramelized walnuts before leaving again. I had meant to eat it after I’ll get back again, in the evening, but I felt the need for it after that call. On the other hand, at least I also did the day’s squats.
I left again at 7:35 PM, wearing a mask and taking the metro, since dad said that he wanted to drive to and from work, so I had his metro card. I just went to Obor, but I checked four Mega Image locations and one Shop & Go from that area, getting a few Kapia peppers that were among the spoiling products in the second Mega Image, without being charged for the bag. They were imported, but I hadn’t seen Romanian ones anywhere and in that location they were listed as being from Greece, so at least from the EU, and I chose to believe the label even though in all other Mega Image locations it said that they were from Turkey. Either way, I stuffed that bag in a pocket and entered the other locations with it, and in the last Mega Image I found chili peppers among the spoiling products and meant to get a bag for dad. However, I couldn’t find them on the shelf, so I didn’t know the price and also thought that there was a chance to find an evening discount for them at Kaufland, and that Mega Image closes later, so I put the bag that seemed to contain the best ones at the bottom of the pile and walked out.
I also checked Penny, and the guard stopped me when I was leaving and asked me to unzip my jacket, so I did that and showed him what I had in the inside pockets, but he still patted me for a moment before saying that it was fine. He never checked the pocket where I had those Kapia peppers, however. Either way, it seemed that the trash hadn’t been gathered at all in that area and at first I meant to gather ten bottles and put them in that machine, but after picking up the two that went towards that other voucher, I only spotted two others that were clean and would certainly be accepted and easy to get, without digging through trash or being right next to occupied benches, so I just kept those two that went towards that voucher and walked away, ending up wasting a little more time by going to the next crossing and then walking back from there.
Carrefour was next, and I put the Kapia peppers and the bottles in a cabinet, then I got an expiring product for dad and also meant to get two beers for him, since there should have been a discount for the second one. However, they seemed to have changed their schedule for sales and the ones that I knew of had apparently ended the previous day, since I didn’t see any label announcing that discount anymore and when I went to the self-checkout, after paying for the other product separately, I scanned the beers and no discount applied, so I motioned to the guy who was at the computer to clear the transaction and walked out, retrieving my things from the cabinet and stuffing the purchases in my pockets, so I just put those bottles back in a cabinet when I got to Kaufland, not caring for the fact that it didn’t lock. Then I washed my hands and entered the store when it was past 9:40 PM, maybe closer to 9:45 PM, and just got a couple of things, rushing to the self-checkout when it was announced that the store had closed and needing to call an employee to override the error when the machine said that the kohlrabi was not the correct product. Then I took my time to put the purchases from there and the bottles from the cabinet in the backpack, ripping the leaves off the kohlrabi in order to make all of it fit in a bag and throwing away the naked stem parts, before stopping once again after walking out, to also add what I had in my pockets and arrange everything better. And I saw a cart with a coin in it in the parking lot when I walked away, so I connected it to others and retrieved the coin.
I then returned to that Mega Image, entering with the backpack and finding that bag of chili peppers still where I had placed it, even though the others that I had placed over it had been moved. I still couldn’t find a price label, however, so I asked at the checkout, then bought it, once again not being charged for the bag. Then I rather rushed back to the metro, just grabbing another one of those bottles that go towards that voucher off the street, just as I was crossing to the station, so I only added the chili peppers, along with that bottle, in the backpack as I was waiting for the metro, arranging everything once again after doing so.
I got back right at 11 PM, though after cleaning the litter box I went to drop a bag of trash down the chute. I’m not sure how I had managed to remain somewhat functional until then, after that call and the resulting hopelessness and despair, but at that point I was so out of it, nearly stunned… But a little after 12:10 AM I went to take a bath, being done an hour later. Then I also sliced three breads for dad and washed and cleaned what I could out of what was in the kitchen, finally starting to eat dinner at 3:35 AM. I finished at 4 AM and got in bed at 5:20 AM.
And now I should have moved on to the day of the half marathon, but I just can’t get myself to write about that either. I definitely mean to write about it, just like I mean to write about April 8, so it won’t end up like the period spent in the hospital… But I did so badly that it feels like a trauma, so I just can’t, at least for now. But wasting a personal post on a single day that’s not such an important event is unacceptable, so I guess I’ll also add Thursday here, since that’s when I went to Bookfest.
I initially meant to leave at 4 PM, switching to 4:30 PM after learning that dad didn’t need the metro card, but then he started getting ready to cook and would have messed things up even more if I wouldn’t have helped with something, so it was past 5:05 PM when I finally did leave, after first going to drop a bag of trash down the chute, then returning in order to also grab the recyclables. I still made the small detour needed in order to drop them off in a recycling bin, however, not walking all the way to the metro station with them again. And I once again didn’t wear a mask when I’d have done so before, taking one with me but not putting it on for that metro ride or even at the fair, which I reached a little after 6:20 PM, after getting off at Aviatorilor and trying a different route that was supposed to be a little shorter but getting confused and losing some time instead.
I entered the hall through the last door, looked left and the second publisher I saw was the one that I knew focused on Romanian science fiction and fantasy, so I started looking, hesitating a little before the person who was there gestured for me to enter that small stand, at which point I did. But I still had the music on and definitely didn’t mean to interact in any way, yet she got up and asked what should she tell me about, insisting despite the fact that I said that I was just looking, asking whether I preferred science fiction or fantasy and then what kind of fantasy, and when she continued, getting into specifics, I turned off the music and rather grudgingly paid more attention, eventually asking about the price of the series that she recommended and then saying that I’ll look around and maybe return later. And I did keep that series in mind and might have ended up buying it if I’d have found something else to add that was cheap enough to get close to the maximum amount that I meant to spend, without going over it, but I guess it’s a good thing that I didn’t, because I checked some reviews after getting back and saw that the author wrote science fiction before, the stories take place in the same universe and some important details tend to require reading those other books, which I’d otherwise have no interest in.
Either way, I then tried to make a plan and looked all around, finding a Leftist publisher, which I kept in mind just in case, and two other Romanian fantasy publishers that I didn’t know about, plus some fantasy books in another place that I only checked at the very end, since it was right in front of that first stand and that first interaction had messed me up quite badly, so I had a very hard time persuading myself to get back in that area. But, to return to those other fantasy publishers, I don’t care about reading fantasy in Romanian, and when it’s actually written by Romanian authors it seems even worse, but I look in part because I wonder whether anything would change my impression and in part because I just want the genre to develop and be more successful here as well. And loud music was playing in the stand of the first of those two new publishers, so I knew that conversation was not expected and I was indeed allowed to check out books without anyone saying anything. Things might have been different if I’d have actually entered the stand of that second new fantasy publisher that I found, and the prices, which contrasted with those from the other one, which struck me as unreasonably high even with the discounts, did make me want to do so, but two authors were there at the time, the few other people who had gathered meaning that the small space was filled anyway, and what I saw gave me the impression that they focused on paranormal romance, so I passed by the stand a few times but didn’t actually pick up any of the books. And when I checked after getting back I confirmed that impression about their focus, though not all of their books fit in that genre and I actually saw at least one that seemed interesting, if not two, and the discounted price would have made it worth the risk.
Back to the fair, I did avoid Seneca, as in those who also make and send those packages that I tend to volunteer to help put together, until the manager seemed to have left, since she’d have probably recognized me, but otherwise it was a relief that I was pretty much ignored by everyone except that first person and an author who was at the stand of some other publisher that I was just checking without actually being interested, who came to me, pointed out her book and asked whether I wanted her to tell me about it, at which point I just said that I didn’t and walked away. Even when I quite thoroughly checked the books in English that were available at the place that I got something from last year, the two people who were there didn’t say anything even when I had to stand right next to one of them in order to check a certain section. I didn’t find anything to buy from there this time around, however.
Still, I did end up buying two books. They’re in Romanian and nonfiction, and the first, An Immense World, came from a publisher that seems to have quite a few other potentially interesting titles. They’re just titles that I’d want to read, not necessarily also own, especially since they’re translated in Romanian, but I did end up buying that one, and then I went back to Seneca, since the manager didn’t seem to be there anymore, and got Scenes from the Heart. After deciding to try checking the Library once again after getting back, I saw that the catalog was finally back on-line and this second book is also available in one location, but I mainly purchased it in order to support them, since they actually have a collection of environmental books, print on recycled paper, plant trees for those books, and also use a part of the sales for those other programs that they have.
The fair was supposed to close at 8 PM that day and that time was approaching as I made those purchases, so I was rather rushing, but I walked out at 7:55 PM without hearing any sort of announcement, and I also can’t say that I noticed anyone gathering their things and getting ready to close. On the other hand, I finally did put on the mask just before getting back to the metro station, going to Carrefour Orhideea and actually taking the metro all the way instead of getting off at Basarab and then walking, which might be slightly faster even if I use the right exit… But I used the wrong one, being confused by the fact that I wasn’t coming from the direction that I pretty much always come from when I get there by metro, and then had to wait more at the stoplights. And going there proved to be a complete waste of time anyway. At least I entered with the backpack, and confirmed that they do still make that bread in that location, even though they don’t seem to make it at Unirii anymore, and I’m not sure about Park Lake either, finding two left even at that hour, but when we couldn’t even fit the bread that we already had in the freezer, I didn’t get any, and I didn’t find anything else either.
I then walked to Kaufland, using the toilet and then once again entering with the backpack, since I just had those books in it. It was 9:20 PM at that point and nothing that I cared to get was left in the bakery area, but some green onions were left and they had an evening discount, and on top of the actual bundles there was also a pile of cut tops in the next crate, so I initially grabbed three bundles and those tops, but in the end I put two of the bundles back, just buying one, in order to justify also getting those tops… Not that anyone said anything. Either way, I also got some cheese and the one bag of spoiling bananas, even if they were discounted only by a little over 50% and the base price was quite high, since I opened it and they seemed to be quite good when I looked… Though when I ate one after getting back I saw that it had been a wrong impression and I probably shouldn’t have bought them. And the fact that I did also led to needing to wait for an employee, since I went to the self-checkout just before closing time but was still waiting for someone to get to me when the announcement came, since those bananas wouldn’t scan. And the employee who finally came after a while asked me to read the code, since she couldn’t see it, and after logging on and entering it she also added the charge for the bag. I’m pretty sure that it’s the first time when I get charged for a bag that I’m forced to use in this manner at Kaufland, but I just frowned and paid, then arranged the purchases in the backpack and went back to the metro, ending up waiting ten minutes and not even using them to protect the books a little better, only thinking to put them in one more bag and arrange things a little differently in the backpack while on the metro. But that seems to have been good enough, the brine from the cheese not getting to them.
I got back a little after 10:45 PM, once again went to drop a bag of trash down the chute after cleaning the litter box… And I realized that it was going to be a long night when I saw how much I had to clean after dad had cooked. So I ate what was still usable from a banana, something sweet and some yogurt with oats while taking care of a part of the washing and cleaning, then I went to drop another bag of trash down the chute and finally went to shower when it was 1:35 AM. I was done just over half an hour later, but I still had plenty to do, so I eventually ate dinner between 4 AM and 4:45 AM.
At least I managed to post what’s above before midnight, but this next part should probably also be in this post, so I edited it about half an hour later in order to add that things might have been different if I’d have rushed to go to bed that morning. Probably not, since I doubt that they’d have noticed the problem soon enough, but at least I wouldn’t have been affected by what made me write the previous post just then. As it was, however, I decided to check some more things, including HonestGamers, saw two comments on my review for Blades of Heaven, which was the most recent one that was listed, and clicking to see them led to having my password stolen, in plain text! I only realized that the next day, but knowing that the account had probably been compromised made me change that password right away, being relieved that seeing those posts about the site having been hacked had made me wary enough to avoid using any that might lead to other relevant accounts being compromised as well. And then I sent them a message about it and finally got in bed at 6:10 AM.
When I did realize what had really happened and how easy it is to harvest passwords from that site, I sent another message, that one somewhat angrier, and took my time to make sure that nothing else could be compromised, which mostly implied checking accounts that I hadn’t used in years, reactivating one despite not meaning to, deleting one that I was sure I had already deleted and finding that a few others had been deleted, either for inactivity or after changes to the sites, so there should be nothing left that uses any form of that password or any that someone who has it might be likely to figure out.
And since I already got to that next day, I’ll also mention here that I ate dinner between 3:35 AM and 4:20 AM and then I got in bed a couple of minutes after 5:15 AM. And this morning I finally managed to stick to the dinner schedule once again, but I ended up getting in bed at 5:20 AM, and after getting up to pee a little after 8:30 AM it was really hard to get back to sleep, my mind constantly getting back to what I can’t get myself to write about, so I only slept for a couple more hours after that, despite staying in bed until 1:30 PM or so.