Where should I begin? I don’t want to directly touch the topic without any anecdote. Let’s start from the beginning.
Long long ago, there was a man named… Oh, I’m sorry. When I say beginning, I cannot help myself starting from the beginning…
ON THE TRAIN
I bought the cheapest train ticket to Hangzhou, 57 RMB for a round trip and I left Shanghai at 2nd Nov. I could leave at 1st Nov, because I didn’t have class last Saturday, thus I could spend one more day in Hangzhou, which I’m very willingly to do so. But none of my colleagues told me that I would be free last Saturday until I booked my tickets, so my schedule was then fixed.
Shanghai and Hangzhou are really close, though I suppose I took the slowest train, it only takes two hours to get to my destination. And on that train, I could tell that so many people go to Hangzhou with the same purpose like mine, to take part in the marathon. You can easily detect them, because they all wear running shoes, professional watches (which seemed like those devices that can record your heartbeat rate), tight pant, slim figure and so on. I guess I partly understand why they come all the way to Hangzhou to take the marathon, it because 2013 Shanghai Marathon is god damn crazy! You just cannot get the number to put yourself onto that road. I don’t know why, marathon in Shanghai is like a fever of the city, people are suddenly all enthusiastic to join it. I strongly hope the marathon in Shanghai next year will not be so hysterical.
MEET A TWITTER ACQUAINTANCE
I asked a twitter acquaintance (
@tualatrix) to help me get the marathon equipments. So when I got off the train, I headed directly to him. With the help of Google Map, I never worry about finding my way to an address. When we met each other, we casually found a place to sit down and had a nice talk (except the F***king mosquitoes), we talk about the air pollution, ubuntu, marathon and so on. I remembered that he worked as a independent program developer, wish him good luck. It’s a hard way, but it’s also a way that I’m much admired.
Hangzhou Touran Backpack Hostel
|From blog photos|
This is where I lived, a youth hotel. Until now, I’ve stayed in two youth hotels, not too many, but neither of them let me down. I’m sure that whenever there’s a chance I’ll still try to stay in the youth hotel. Cheap in not its only advantage (though I really value that), its atmosphere is the most attractive thing to me. At the first glance of Touran Backpack Hostel, I thought it might be an expensive hotel, because its style is quite unique, reminds you those dynasties long time ago, very impressive. But then I push the door and went in, it turned out that this was really the hotel I booked online for only 35 yuan per night.
The receptionists are very kind and pretty pretty, :-). They showed me the room, a 8-beds mixed room, clean and tide, I felt it quite worth the money, though the sheet felt a little bit damp. Of course you shouldn’t expect the room which costs only 35 yuan per night would be luxurious decorated and served you as a king/queen. They have two little cats and a big dog, they named the two kittens “crazy” and “dumb”, for one is rather energetic and the other is quite timid. I like the “dumb” more, because it’s so weak, always put itself on the recharge to keep warm, that rouses my sense of protection. You can see it below:
And one thing you may not believe, the dog would feed the kittens. I don’t think it actually feeding them, but by doing so it provides the sense of security to the kittens, I’ll give you another clip of video below:
I met a lot of people there, one American was doing business here, his business is related to architecture of Chinese garden art. He lived in the hotel for more than one month, the staff members were all very familiar with him. Though some of the staff members are very poor at English, but they still talked to the man. I found they all focused on their own topic, they cannot form an efficient communication, though they talked with each other with the eye contact. That’s so interesting, I never thought such communication could possibly happen, but if you don’t afraid to share your own story, even your interlocutor cannot totally understand you, you two could have some conversations.
I also met a guy who would run the full marathon, he came from Xiamen and worked for a coffee bar. This is the first man who runs a full marathon that I meet in person. He can finish a semi-marathon in about 1.5 hour, a record I suppose I can never hit. He looked thin and not very strong, like a student, quiet and very polite. All in all, he’s not like an athlete, how come could he finish a marathon? We talked casually for a long time, then he wish me good luck and I said so to him too, after that he went up stairs to sleep at about 21:00, because tomorrow would be a tough day.
I acknowledged my roommates when I was ready to go to bed. And Three of us would run the next day. One of us didn’t even get the qualification, but he would run anyway. Then a girl told him that she got a number of semi-marathon for someone, but for some reason this number wouldn’t be used the next day, so she was willingly to give the number to him for free. The only thing the girl wants is that she need the certificate of Hangzhou marathon, with that certificate she will take part in the next marathon more easily.
The next day, the three of us got up early, we tried to take the bus to get to Huanglong stadium,the start place of Hangzhou marathon, but waited for 20mins in vain. So we four (the fourth guy is the one I mentioned above who would take a full marathon) took a taxi there, then we went apart.
2013 HANGZHOU MARATHON
The AQI in Hangzhou that day was horrible, so I decided to put on my 3M respirator, that would make the long run more uncomfortable, but I cannot figure out a better way to keep the balance between finishing the game and being kind to my health. It rained the last night, and the first 1km was a little slippery, I kept my pace in a low speed. When you run with so many people, you’ll certainly be motivated, but I told myself don’t be too excited, it’s not the speed but finish line that I wanted. 5km is easy for me, I can both jogging and viewing the beautiful scenes of Xihu, actually that’s part of the reasons why I come all the way here to run. At about 10km we encounter a tunnel, I heard this marathon is on a plain road all the way, so I was afraid that it will be difficult to run up to the slope. Luckily, it’s only a down hill slope. When I hit 16km, I began to feel tired, and then one post held by a girl impress me, “It’s not a jogging, it’s life.” (这不是跑步，这是人生). I didn’t’ try to get any water this time, and because of the respirator it was hard for me to get the fresh air, I felt a bit thirsty and cannot keep my breath steadily. What even worse was wait ahead, three or four tunnels, both up and down, I can tell that when I run up to the slope, my pace was almost as fast as walking, and when finally I set my feet on the plain road, I had an impulse to stop immediately and take a rest, but I knew by doing so, the game would be more difficult, so I kept jogging with the help of my strong will. The last 3km was the toughest, especially you saw some people was charging, but even your brain issued the order you hadn’t the strength to carry it. The finish line is what I want to complain about, because I didn’t see it! The road near the final was jammed, I had to stop, I didn’t even know when my recorder was recorded. The final part was the most wonderful part I believe all the runners dreamed about, so you just should keep it in mind and don’t ever mess it up.
About my respirator, I heard many people who stand on the sideways talked about it:
–“Oh, he took the standard equipment from Beijing.”
–“No, I’m not, I’m just a guy who care about my own health.”
–“You see, the guy with the respirator!”
–“Yeah, it’s strange, I should admit it.”
–“It’s a breathing machine, to provide oxygen.”
–“Thousands no! You totally misunderstand it. It’s a particle respirator, it’s actually prevent me from getting more oxygen! I’m f**king want a breathing machine now!”
When I finished my game, I went to print my record. What I want to say is the girl who sorted the participants’ number paper in another line different from mine was a quite pretty girl, I kinda had the thought to go to that line, and to exchange some words with her. But that was a long queue, I thought it through and finally gave it up. I didn’t take my phone with me, so don’t blame on me for not posting a photo here.
When I waited there to print my recorder, some people handed out leaflets of 2014 Yangzhou marathon. I think it’s a good way for me to travel around the country and meanwhile to take part in the marathons. So I made up my mind instantly that I’ll go there.
There was something to complain about the Hangzhou marathon, the 2/3G network at the destination was terrible, maybe it was because so many people were using it or maybe the network sucks at the first place. I cannot use my Google Map, thus I cannot find my way to the hotel, I can only randomly take a bus to get away from the place and got my app work, only after that I can return my hotel.
I made a mistake this time, I didn’t cut my feet nails. I don’t think it would be a problem, but it is… When in the process of running I can tell that one of my toes hurt, I just put it aside, but when I back home I find its bleeding…
|From blog photos|
- WALKING AROUND THE LAKE OF XIHU
When I left my hotel it was only 15:30, and my train is 19:14, thus I decided to walk to the train station. And on my way I would pass Xihu. I like Hangzhou very much, for the beautiful scenes of the city, especially the lake of Xihu. Every time I walk around it, I feel relax and… though it sound ridiculous…I feel the inner peace. Because I walk on my feet, whenever I found some place attracted me, I can simply draw myself near the scene and take a close look about it. There were so many famous scenes I passed by, but I don’t know their officially English names, so I’ll not list them here, but I think I am ready to pay a second or third visit of these places.
|From blog photos|
|From blog photos|
Farewell, Hangzhou, you left me a wonderful memory this time and I’ll cherish it for my lifetime.