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Before and After Bucharest Half Marathon 2019

Got woken up this morning by my UPS beeping due to a power failure, and since the power didn’t return in a couple of minutes I had to turn off the computer. Did call to see whether there was any information about the failure, but the only thing the machine had was for an entirely different part of the city and I of course didn’t wait to be transferred to an operator to ask, so I just got back in bed and woke up again about one hour later, hearing the faint hum letting me know that power had been restored. It did fail again about half an hour later, but only for about one minute, so ended up getting out of bed again, not having fallen asleep again yet, but didn’t have to turn the computer off again, and it seems like it was fine after that, and I could recover some of the sleep I lost yesterday. On the other hand, quite a storm started just as I was starting to write this, at 7 PM, though it didn’t seem to cause problems after all. The threat of storm wasn’t why I didn’t go to a protest I initially intended to go to today though, since that was during the day. In truth, I was exhausted after sleeping so little yesterday and even completely forgot about it when I did wake up, though by then it was probably late anyway.

But this post won’t be about these days, but about what the title says, I guess ending with May 16, since all I have to say about that day is that there were no visits logged again, in either view, and I guess I tore a scab, possibly caused by sunburn, from this mole on my nose and there was a fair bit of blood which took a while to stop, while about May 17 there’d be a lot to write. And it’ll start with May 9, when I made the pasta I meant to have for dinner Saturday, which took a long time even for me. The fact that there was no hot water that day, or the next for that matter, didn’t help either, having to wash everything, including all the stuff left by dad in and around the sink, with cold water. Took me quite some time to clean up the mushrooms too, which looked and smelled somewhat suspicious, but I guess they were fine in the end, and I ate a whole lot of that pasta and salad that night, to do the same thing I planned to do Saturday.

Slept poorly that morning, waking up to pee three times after drinking a second tea at night, also waking when dad got back… On top of that, when I eventually got up my gum was swollen in a spot where it occasionally happens, but it usually goes down quite quickly, while then it needed a full day to more or less get back to normal. Still, had to get the race kit, so I went out at 12:50 PM, after the rain had stopped. Used the toilet in Izvor Park to wash my hands after getting there after feeling something sticky on the bar I held on to in the metro, then it was easy and didn’t take long at all to get the kit this time around, so I was back in the metro at 2 PM. However, it was I think after 6 PM when I realized that a kind of yogurt was included in the race kit and I put it in the fridge, not daring to eat it until the following week as a result, since I didn’t even know how long it had been in the bag before being given to me and I didn’t want to risk anything then.
Getting back a bit, since the rain hadn’t started again yet, I decided to check out that pizza place that I used to get pizza from before last year, since they no longer have a menu on-line, and it was a bit odd when I walked in, because I was immediately asked whether I was first from one place, the another. Can’t say I really caught the names, but I guess they could have been either reviewers or, perhaps more likely, considering how I look, some of those making deliveries. But I just said I wasn’t, then found a menu on a table and had a look, to see whether they could still be an option for Sunday, finding that their prices had increased by a lot, and also noticing that they had removed one ingredient from the pizza I would have likely been most interested in ordering if I would have ordered one after the race. Still, they’d have likely remained an option if I’d have managed to obtain the time I aimed for, but since I didn’t
After getting back to the metro, I once again bumped into a guy I knew from protests, mainly those about Rosia Montana back in the day. Had bumped into him twice more recently, around that mall that’s close to the farmers’ market, but we just nodded at each other in passing then, yet this time we were next to each other and waiting for the train, so we started talking, with him saying that he was actually wondering whether he’ll see me again because it seemed we were bumping into each other every time he went out those days. We got off at the same stop too, so just taking the metro for one stop, but then went in different directions, though I guess he actually went in the direction I used to head in as well, until I started getting back here another way more recently, meaning that I could have continued to walk with him. But I was glad I didn’t, since I was already drenched in sweat due to this sort of interaction.
Either way, that evening I also finished the book and rushed with the quick review, posting something just before midnight and editing it after that. Had tears in my eyes because of it, though of course I still couldn’t cry, Rice writing as Lestat really feeling, as I wrote there, as perhaps the closest to a literary equivalent of returning home… And also to a time and place when… When things were different. But, then again, I was at breaking point anyway, having pushed myself like that, and dad had also decided to start some work around the apartment just that day, of course, making noise, taking piles of stuff out of the living room and placing it all over the kitchen and hallway… At first he even said “we’ll see” when I reminded him I wanted to be able to get to bed whenever I’ll want to the next day, without any noise bothering me, and didn’t want to have to squeeze myself around all that stuff that night either, but he eventually did at least get the stuff from the kitchen before I went to eat that night. However, perhaps in an attempt to get closer to finishing then, he was still doing stuff even when I finished eating, the fact that he was awake and moving around that night really getting to me, considering the state I was in already. The fact that I couldn’t shower, the hot water not returning even that night, didn’t help either.

The water was still cold when I woke up to pee at 7 AM, but at 9:10 AM, when I went again, it was warm. Obviously didn’t take a shower then, instead getting back to bed, yet continued to keep waking frequently despite not needing to pee again after that, eventually getting up at 2 PM. Did shower in the afternoon, then noticed that they had printed Lucian-Robert under my number, therefore ignoring the fact that I had written just Robert in the field for what you want to be printed there, and the organizers even completely ignored this part when they did eventually reply, after the race, to the message I sent then to ask about this and a couple of other things. Either way, tried to get some more sleep, but I think I only got about half an hour or so, though otherwise I guess I sort of meditated, counting on heartbeats and breaths, even getting to 500… Got up around 8:45 PM, started doing stuff in the kitchen, then really stuffed myself, eating 2 kg or so, and managing to finish before midnight.

After the race, when I left Constitution Square, I was thinking to just come straight back, not buy myself anything, since I didn’t deserve it. But dad had given me 30 RON for the day and there was that place I kept meaning to get something from all these years, especially after a race, so when I got to the metro station I just stood there for a while, thinking it over, then decided to not touch what I had intended to spend if I’d have managed to stay under 1:45 but spend those after all, not getting a pizza but finally getting something from there instead. So I turned away from the metro station and walked there instead, then wandered around that area, looking multiple times, taking quite some time to decide, and eventually bought three things for 20 RON. Or, more exactly, for 20.01 RON, since their prices usually end in 97, not even 99, and I gave 20.01 RON to see whether I’ll actually get 0.10 RON back, but had that coin taken but no change given, though at least the cashier stopped me to hand me the receipt.
After that, thought I sort of had a plan for the remaining 10 RON, but as I was leaving that Old Town area I noticed another pastry place with the name, and picture, of a chef that’s also known from TV shows, I think, but surprisingly low prices. Looked it up after getting back and it seems he just allows that place to use his name, possibly being a way for him to start becoming known for such things as well, his actual place, with a name that’s sort of the subtitle of that pastry place, in fact being in this mall that’s close to the farmers’ market here. But some of the things sold there looked interesting, and they were large and usually cheaper than those I had just purchased, so got two more things for 5 RON each… After waiting for the older woman who was there to pay attention, since she was writing something in a register and not caring. Not a chance of a receipt, for me or the others who also got things then, as she just gave us what we asked for and took the money, without as much as touching the cash register.
Was about to piss myself when I got to the metro at Unirii, since I hadn’t gone to the toilet again after the race, and wasn’t sure where a toilet would be there, or even if there was one, but there is a McDonald’s in that station, so went there, just barely managing to hold it long enough. Then, after getting out of the metro here, had a look at the menu of a Turkish restaurant that’s nearby as well, though I obviously had no intention of ordering anything else then, so I pretty much ignored the two waiters who came, one after the other, to ask what I wanted and stand next to me for a bit even though I was just looking through the menu placed next to the door. Still, the time spent there meant I walked back out when another one of the “old guard” activists, who’s also an important member of Demos now, was walking past.
Weighed the stuff I had bought after getting back here, seeing that it weighed just over one kilogram. I actually recall seeing exactly 1.049 kg, though that included the bags… And that was probably very similar to the weight I got rid of just before weighing the food, since as soon as I walked through the door I suddenly found myself really needing to do what I couldn’t before leaving. Then I started eating, going slowly after a while and leaving one of the things for later, since I was completely stuffed. Then I showered and that one last thing became dinner, as I didn’t eat anything else that night. Wouldn’t have felt like it even if I wouldn’t have stuffed myself like that, as after a while I was just sitting at the computer, rather stunned, not doing much of anything, hugging my knees, feeling rotten for having failed… And, of course, thinking of Andra. Even sent her an e-mail, or more exactly just sent a message to be lost into the void… Was finally in bed at 3 AM.

The following day, since my Emsisoft Anti-Malware (EAM) license was ending that evening, I finally got around to doing those tests I had been asked to do and sending the logs. Did get a reply to be told they were sent to the developers, but there was nothing else after I sent another reply, after my license had expired, to ask to be informed if something will come out of it, mainly for the sake of curiosity, though I guess EAM may become an option again in the future, if they’ll fix a lot of things. Since the support guy was otherwise so dedicated, going above and beyond when it came to what little he could actually do himself and talking about plenty of things that were not related to the product as well, this lack of another reply makes me wonder whether their system rejected that last e-mail because I no longer had a valid license when I sent it.
Either way, left around 6:45 PM, wanting to use some trips on that found metro card that was expiring the next day, which meant I had to get back late, after dad would leave, since he wasn’t using his card during the day and it’d have been quite pointless to use mine without doing something I couldn’t do otherwise. So I first went to that bigger Carrefour, getting a few things from there and also finding 1 RON on the floor, plus a couple of coins. After that, went to a park I don’t go to otherwise and explored a bit, at first just going from one end to the other of what I guess is the main alley, then sort of following a couple from a distance for a bit, since they seemed to know where they were going and I didn’t, oddly enough also spotting a 0.10 RON coin despite the fact that it was dark. When I got to another wide alley going to a major exit, I got out of the park, then kept going, being less and less certain that I was even going the right way to return to the metro station as more time passed. Spotted a metro station eventually, but that was actually the one before the one I had gotten off at, or the one after it in the direction I had gone in to get there, and I sort of figured that out right away, so I kept going at first, but after a while I turned around, crossed the road and took the metro from there, getting back here at 11:15 PM.

Still had three trips left on that metro card the next day, when it expired, so I had to use it even though dad again didn’t need his. Did have a plan, but that would have required me getting somewhere by 4 PM or so and it was too late for that when it stopped raining, so I left around 5 PM, taking out the plastic and metal and the glass bottles, then heading for that Carrefour at Obor, finding something that was discounted due to expiring soon and deciding not to go anywhere else after buying that, not wanting to carry it around. Also got some tea, and when I added it up I realized I was missing 0.01 RON to have exact change, which 0.01 RON I guess you can say was that coin I gave when I bought those first things after the half marathon. So, since I didn’t spot any coin when I looked around, I decided to get some bread as well. And then got some cabbage from that market on the way back, prices for it finally getting back to somewhat more normal levels, plus two kilograms of cheap apples. Obviously didn’t even go near those who hadn’t allowed me to pick when I tried, but did in fact let the woman selling those I did buy pick them herself, after I just had a quick look and saw that they were usually good enough.
Since I just needed one more trip to get back, I was left with one more on the card and I really wanted to offer it to someone, but nobody seemed to want it. I actually managed to get myself to hold up the card and ask whether anybody wanted a trip when I got back to that metro station, but nobody said anything, and even when I actually went to a guy who seemed to be having trouble buying one from the machines and told him directly that I had a trip he could use, he refused. Had seen him first at one machine, then he moved to another, I guess taking some time to notice the message stating that this second one was out of order, and then to a third, talking on his phone all this time, and he was still on the phone when I basically grabbed his arm and told him I had that trip. Ended up standing there awkwardly for a bit, until he finished his conversation, then asked again, but he refused, saying he had to get back as well and it’d be better to just buy one… Which I guess was an excuse due to him feeling awkward about it as well, since you can buy cards with a single trip, after all. Either way, that meant I still had that one trip when I got off the metro here, and I couldn’t get myself to ask again, so I just wrote on the back of the card that there was one trip left and it expired that day, then just placed it like that, with the writing on top, on one of the gates, actually right in front of a woman who was digging through her purse just then. No idea whether she used it or not, just left right away, not turning to look.


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