Dizzying two days with not much time to post, so I’m gonna Tarantino it from now and go backwards a bit:

my instructions for today: Relax. How am I doing?

Thursday was Official Check-In Day – 1300 athletes checking in between 10 and 4 in one big tent.

that's the finish line media grandstand behind the athletes

Everyone with whom I have stood in every line this week has been so joyful and happy and excited – maybe it’s just something about Ironman.  This has been the most social group I have ever been with at any race.  I’ve met so many interesting people, it has been worth that alone to make the trip!

more wetsuit dipping with Didymo Dave
My girls

Huuuuge shoutout to my girls Liz and Ali…these girls have been life-savers for me.  They’ve befriended me, helped me with the swim, told me where to get coffee, helped me with the swim, eaten pasta with me, helped me with the swim, and have encouraged me at every turn.  They are Ironman veterans, and are from the same town (Canterbury) as daughter Glenda’s squeeze Sam.  I have loved making these new friends, and any success I have tomorrow will be due in no small part to their guidance and advice!

on the start beach

Jesse, Sam, and Laura showed up Thursday night, and this morning (Friday) Laura went with me to the women’s breakfast.  It was a panel of 4 women who have competed in various Ironman races.  Their ages ranged from 22 to 64, and they were a delight to listen to.  Then we attended the competitor briefing, then back to the campground to get the last few things packed into the bags.

(Brief interruption as I save and publish this post and begin another – a little trouble downloading pics)