Struggling to write a personal post Sunday evening in order to have a second one this week is something I’m certainly trying to avoid, but here I am. It also means I won’t be napping this evening, and with dad starting to cook at 1 PM, if not a bit earlier, today, I woke up earlier than I hoped I would then as well, so I’d say I still have some catching up to do after Friday… Yet tomorrow I have another long walk planned, possibly after carrying another rather heavy load. I’m hoping the forecast will still say that I should be able to leave next week’s run for later though, because if it’ll go back to what it said a couple of days ago, making tomorrow look like the only day when I should just be able to run in the afternoon, no longer needing to do it in the morning, on next to no sleep, I will do so and get to the walking and the carrying later in the evening. I hope it won’t get to that, because it’d be terribly exhausting and unwise to even try when I’m yet to recover after Friday, but I guess I’ll see exactly what I’ll do when the time comes… Which will also be the case for that small giveaway I mentioned in the previous post, though before going to bed this morning I ended up buying a second game for it, using a heavy discount code someone posted and which was about to expire this afternoon.
To actually get to what this post is about, I’ll start with the fact that, considering the plans for Friday, I tried to get some more sleep Thursday evening, spending at least two and a half hours in bed, but only actually sleeping for one hour at best, being unable to get back to sleep after waking up that first time, and getting caught in a series of thoughts that made me approach a panic attack by the time I eventually cut my losses and got up. But at least I also made the tea while eating at night, finished eating at 3:05 AM and then also took a shit before getting back to bed, at 4:30 AM. Had this idea that, when the plan is to get up again very early and run, if I feel a certain need before going to bed but it’s not exactly pressing, I shouldn’t go then, because it’s better to go shortly before leaving and that’s even less likely to work in that case. But when I quite clearly can’t do it in the morning either way, at least this gets rid of most of that added weight and reduces the risk of said pressing need appearing while running.
However, while that matter was sorted out to some extent, the cats made sure I didn’t even get the little sleep I could have gotten otherwise. First, Liza had a little “concert” just as I was falling asleep, making me fear I won’t be able to do so at all. Then, after I nevertheless managed to, some time after she stopped, Micky had her turn as well. And I’m quite sure I was woken up one more time, either in between or after Micky did it, by something that sounded like rain but was probably water raining down from above on something that made a loud noise. Then again, it’s also possible that I dreamed that, the dream being what woke me up. There’s also a chance that I dreamed that I woke up and in fact didn’t, but I doubt that.
After all of that, I was awake again at 6:20 AM, too exhausted and confused to even know why anymore, and when I saw the time I just turned off the alarm, which was supposed to ring in ten minutes, and got up. Even squeezed out a tiny bit more in the toilet, though definitely not enough to not be worried, and otherwise had the usual stuff plus almonds, with two doughnuts with honey and jam as something sweet, drank most of the tea and left at 8:30 AM, wearing the full running gear and again having a number of things stuffed in my tights, though not as many bags as last time. The reported temperature at 8 AM was 20°C, but what it was while I ran is harder to say, because I didn’t think to rush to the computer as soon as I got back and still catch the one reported for 10 AM, and both the forecasts for those hours and the reported temperatures for 11 AM differ by 3-4°C between Bucharest’s three weather stations and the sites I check. Let’s say it was about 22°C when I started and about 25°C when I finished, but that’s just my estimate, and it was sunny anyway, so it felt hotter.
The plan was to go for 16 kilometers and aim to stay under 1:18 again, and I was feeling good enough when I started to even think that I might just get under 1:17. However, the time was an awful 1:20:50, with sector times of 4:28, 5:12, 6:05, 4:35, 5:12, 6:06, 4:40, 5:17, 6:15, 4:48, 5:28, 6:24, 4:46, 5:27 and 6:07, making for lap times of 15:45, 15:53, 16:12, 16:40 and 16:20. So I realized after the very first sector just how much of a lie that feeling was, and by the end of the first lap I knew I had next to no chance to even stay under 1:20. Still thought about it, hoping to somehow stay under 16 minutes on lap three as well and maybe just give myself a shred of a chance of managing that, but knew I was realistically looking at 1:21 at best, and that was perfectly clear after missing that lap three target by quite a margin. In fact, I had to push on lap four to still have a chance to stay even under 1:21, and then I really gave it everything on lap five, feeling like I was getting runner’s high from the first sector and starting to drop out of it later, but just continuing to push, especially on the last sector, and at least managing that. Not that it’s worth much of anything, times over 1:20 for 16 kilometers being just awful unless I’m still recovering from a flu or there’s snow and ice to deal with.
In terms of problems, there was a roadblock on sector two of lap one, requiring me to briefly stop, but that was pretty much it in terms of people, other than the usual weaving and going the long way around occasionally. Otherwise, there were a few gusts on sectors one and three of lap four and sector one of lap five, but they were brief and there was hardly any wind the rest of the time. Did somehow “manage” to catch another spiderweb though, I think on sector one of lap four, and probably lost a couple of seconds trying to get rid of that strand. But it mainly was just a matter of being unable to push harder, though my body gave some other warnings as well, starting with my right knee, as early as sector one of lap two. That seemed to get better after a while, but then got worse from sector two of lap three, getting past the level of a warning and becoming a problem I had to keep managing all the way to the end. My left foot had also started threatening to cramp by then, I believe from sector one of lap three, and then the right one did as well, on sector two of lap four, when my left ankle gave me a few warnings as well. And I also started feeling like I needed to take a shit, I believe on sector two of lap three, and while the feeling went away after a while at first, it returned from sector one of lap five. It wasn’t terribly pressing, but did become another thing I had to manage on that last lap.
Had considered going to more places after the run, but with fewer bags stuffed in my tights, it wouldn’t have been enough for the entire planned route and it’d have been pointless to just get some of the things and then have to go again anyway. In addition, I had checked that pharmacy’s site before leaving and it said that they just had one box of one of the things my mother wanted at that location, and even at that hour there was likely to be a line, so I didn’t want to wait in it only to find that it had sold in the two hours that passed since I looked. So I just stopped at that other one, which only required making a small detour on the way back, and got the other thing my mother asked for and a nose spray for myself. The cashier asked whether I had 0.30 RON, to make it easier with the change, and I had only taken the 0.10 RON I still had with me and found another 0.10 RON coin right there on the floor, but when she asked I spotted another such coin on her desk and just blurted out that I’ll have that if I take that one, and she took it without another word, along with what I had.
I checked that pharmacy’s site again after getting back, seeing that it was a good thing I didn’t risk going there, since that last box had indeed been sold by then. So I changed, ate quite a lot of watermelon, drank the rest of the tea, took more bags and the backpack and left again at 11:50 AM. Since I saw that they still had dozens of boxes of that product there, I made the pretty long walk to what I guess is that pharmacy’s main location, getting there at 1:10 PM. Unfortunately, it seems that my phone, even after being replaced, still reports the battery as being half full just before it’s almost empty, since it showed up as being half full when I left and I took the headphones to listen to music on the way, but was I think not much more than halfway there when I got the low battery warning and had to turn it off in order to still be able to turn it back on occasionally and check the time, use the calculator when I wanted to be really sure, or see whether I had anything from dad. At least this is no reason to send it to be fixed yet again, especially since it’s now quite clear that the problem affects the model in general, but it can be annoying at times.
Back to the trip, there was, of course, a line at that pharmacy, starting outside, since they allow a limited number of people inside, but I made the purchase 25 minutes after getting there, which I’d say is a pretty good time, considering the lines that tend to form there. And then I also went to the Kaufland from that area, to improve my chances of finding everything I was looking for, even if I was going to go to the Vitan one anyway, since at the time I thought I’ll find the cat food that was needed at that pet shop. Can’t be absolutely certain, since I didn’t look for some of the things when I got to the Vitan one, but I doubt there was anything I wouldn’t have been able to find there as well, so buying most of the things from there instead meant I had to carry them all that way, but at least there was a somewhat interesting moment when I was looking at the expiring products from there. Three others were doing the same at the time and, while the rest of us were dismissing most things because the quantities were too large to be consumed quickly, the guy who struck me as having a bit of a modern hippie look was pretty much filling his cart while sort of mocking us for being worried about eating expired things and saying they can last for months past the listed dates if stored properly. Seeing as I rather frequently buy such products and, in fact, both the cheese and sour cream mix finished the night before and the yogurt finished that morning had been expired for a week, I’m quite aware that things can last past the listed dates under the right conditions, but definitely not for months longer when it comes to such products, and buckets of yogurt and sour cream made up much of what was there at the time. But I didn’t say anything, just smiling a little as I left, somewhat pleased that I had met someone who can apparently be relied on to prevent food waste.
Was out of that Kaufland at 2:40 PM, carrying what was probably around 8.5 kg. Not that I even weighed the stuff when I got back, so I’m just estimating based on the weights of the weighed products and my idea of how much the few other things, the packaging and the bags themselves weigh, but with the 4 kg of sugar in my backpack and the rest split between two sturdy bags, with a couple of others inside them to separate the more fragile things and make sure I didn’t have to worry about how I held anything, I could even easily run after a girl who opened her wallet while waiting at a red light and then sprinted away the instant it turned green, because one of her cards flew out at that moment and she didn’t notice. I called after her at first, but she didn’t seem to hear, so I picked up the card and chased after her, until she stopped at the nearby public transportation ticket booth and started searching through her wallet again, at which point I just handed her the card, finding myself blurting out “maybe you need this”. She stared in confusion for a moment, then thanked me, I said “you’re welcome” and then turned around and went back on my way.
As I was walking back from there, kept asking myself whether I should first come back here and drop off those purchases or go straight to that other Kaufland, and what decided it was being unable to find a slice of carrot cake at this little place I passed on the way. I had at some point decided that a slice of carrot cake from there would be the next thing I’ll try when I’ll want to reward myself for something and also support another little place like that, and if the run times only make me want to punish myself, making that long walk for something my mother wanted and ending up saving probably about twice the price of that slice of cake just on that thing, at least compared to the price I saw on the site of the pharmacy dad would have otherwise been likely to buy it from, seemed like a good enough reason to take that amount out of what dad had given me for those purchases. And I actually had a look when I first passed by that place, but they don’t allow customers inside at all anymore and when I was told to stay at the door and that they’ll serve me there I didn’t ask whether they had any that day, just having a quick look from there, seeing the label and walking away… Only to stop there again on the way back, ask for that slice and be told that they don’t actually have any, and I didn’t care for what they said they still had, since those were common cakes I can find anywhere.
Without anything I really didn’t want to carry around in the heat for hours, I just kept going, getting to that other Kaufland at 4:20 PM, stuffing everything in a cabinet and going inside, mainly to also get cucumbers, that being the only thing on my list which I hadn’t bought from that other location. However, I also found surprisingly cheap, nice and large bundles of green onions, so I got three, and some nice yogurts among the expiring products that were also 50% off, not just 30-40% off, as they tend to be at Kaufland, so I got one small one. The problem appeared after that though, when I went to that pet shop and couldn’t find large bags of that kind of cat food, and the medium ones were at the same price they were at Kaufland or Carrefour. Asked an employee whether there was any chance they did have some after all, but he said they didn’t, and when I pointed out that it was listed as available on the site he said they could order it in that case, but it’ll be at least two working days before I’ll be able to pick it up, so I was left wondering what to do, since I needed to get some that evening, dad needing to take some to my mother the next day.
Was leaving at 5:05 PM, carrying an estimated 12 kg and making my way to that Carrefour from the park, but deciding to also look for that cat food at any Mega Image I’ll see on the way. I didn’t even find medium bags in the first one, however, so I went right out, but after having stuffed my things in two cabinets, locking one and leaving the other unlocked, since it didn’t have a key, I forgot to recover the coin needed to lock a cabinet when I left. Realized it after a hundred meters or so and rushed back, just leaving my bags outside as I thought I’ll just grab the coin out of the mechanism and leave again, but I couldn’t find it anymore, and when I looked around after a few seconds I saw the guard holding it towards me and saying that’s what I’m looking for, so I took it, thanked him and left. And then, since I knew there was another Mega Image there, I went to that farmers’ market. Considered having a look through the market, thinking to see whether I’ll at least find some cheap corn to boil, but in the end I just went around it and straight into that store, actually finding the medium bags of that kind of cat food for just a tiny bit less. Still no large bags, however, so I retrieved my things from the two cabinets I had again stuffed them in and continued on my way to Carrefour, where I arrived at 5:50 PM, after a somewhat worrying moment at the entrance of that mall. A guy rushed to enter in the same section of the revolving door, coming alongside me by the time we were inside, so I assumed he’ll go ahead, but instead he stepped back and stayed immediately behind me as we walked through that gate that checks and displays everyone’s temperature, the reason for that becoming clear when it displayed 36.4°C for me and then beeped, so I’d say he knew he had a high temperature and tried to trick the gate in that manner. Still, while she stopped him at first, when I turned to look again I saw that the guard had allowed him inside after all.
When I stuffed everything in a cabinet again, I just emptied the smaller bag and took it with me, forgetting for a moment that I also wanted lemons from there and therefore needed one of those flimsy ones as well, so I ended up just weighing the lemons themselves and then putting them in that bag that I had the other things in and placing the label on it. At Kaufland, where I’m using the self-checkout, which weighs the products again, I can just place the label on one and drop them all on the scales when it comes to such things, and I had done so even earlier that day, with the beets, but I didn’t think that a cashier from Carrefour would accept that… Not that placing them in an open bag, along with the other purchases, only removing those other things and placing them separately on the belt when I got to the checkout, was any different, and he looked a bit oddly at it, but he nevertheless accepted it like that, and also knew just what to do with the 10 RON code I had, not needing to call someone else to help, as it sometimes happens when I have such codes. And yes, I did also get cat food from there, but just two of those medium bags, since they also only had one other kind from that brand in the 1.5 kg bags, that being the same kind that pet shop also had in such bags. Then I left that mall at 6:25 PM, carrying what I’d estimate to have been around 16 kg, possibly up to 16.5 kg, and was back here at 6:43 PM.
Still meant to get detergent from another place though, so I was definitely going to go back out, in which case I also wanted to check out another Mega Image for that cat food, since it’s the largest one from the area, maybe even the largest one I know of. I had passed by it on my way to the second Kaufland I went to, but had no reason to go in then, and then decided against making a detour to have a look when it crossed my mind as I was walking to Carrefour. Also seriously considered not getting that cat food from Carrefour either, knowing that I could at least find those medium bags for a tiny bit less at some Mega Image anyway, but that thought made my mind go through the whole argument I was going to have with dad in that case, with him getting angry because I didn’t get what was “urgent” right away regardless of price. With no real risk of being left without that food or actually needing to spend even more for the medium bags, I should have decided to put up with that argument and do it that way, but when I found myself starting to whimper on the street at the mere thought of it, I ended up doing what I did…
Well, that proved to have been a bad choice, because I left my phone to charge for a few minutes while I put some things away, so I at least had music again when I went back out, at 7:20 PM, rushed to that Mega Image… And found those large bags. The price was a fair bit higher than what Carrefour or even that pet store sold that other kind for, but it still worked out to a little less for the same quantity compared to the medium bags, so I got two of those as well. That left me without enough money for the detergent I meant to get from that other store, so I left that part for Monday, but it also meant it was 7:48 PM when I started walking away from there and I knew that the confectionery I meant to go to next, hoping to at least find a certain kind of cake there if I couldn’t find that one at that other place, closed at 8 PM. Still, I rushed as much as I could without actually running and got there just at 8:00 PM. However, while they hadn’t closed yet, another customer also being inside at the time, they didn’t have much left either, and definitely none of those cakes, if they even make them at all anymore. In fact, I’m not sure what they’d still have available for customers who just walk in anyway, because I checked their site and there’s a message stating that, under the current circumstances, it’s strongly recommended to call first to reserve and schedule picking up products. So I was back at 8:22 PM, with more cat food and nothing else.
Putting it all together, starting with the walk to the park and ending with this last part, Google Maps says I walked over 24 km, not including the distances covered inside stores. Carried things for a good part of that distance, and of course ran 16 km in the morning, but other than some marks left by those ropes this backpack has in place of straps and what looked like a bad sunburn on the back of my neck, I wouldn’t really say I felt it. And it was almost 3:15 AM when I started eating dinner, finishing just about 35 minutes later, though I did also eat something in the evening, also making and drinking another tea then, and also finding the time to look through the file with what ended up being the previous post, in order to post it that night. And I was just in my briefs as I did all of that, since I put the sweaty clothes on the laundry basket and didn’t want to get anything else on before showering, which I only did at night. Unfortunately, speaking of being sweaty, one thing I hadn’t thought of until dad noticed that they were wet was that having the sugar in my backpack all the way meant getting sweat on the bags, and those are paper bags, so I’m not sure what will be done about that. But he took them to my mother, so I can just hope that he told her about it and she’ll think of something, maybe only using them for cooking, because anything else seems quite nauseating to me.