Pacing

936746_10152802665455386_775395128_n

The first time I ran a 10k, I was 16 and had recently completed the Couch-to-5K program. My mum and I had managed to run about 8k without stopping, so we made a last-minute decision to sign up for a 10k that weekend. I was excited — to wear a racing bib, to reach a new goal, to cross the finish line. Mum gave me a little side-eye and said, “Kenza, remember to pace yourself.”

We’d been running together for a while at that point, but the problem was, we never actually ran together. I had this horse-like instinct to remain in front of our two-person pack as we looped around Santo Domingo’s botanical gardens, so I ran slightly ahead of Mum, which kept my competitiveness in check for the most part. If someone came up from behind and passed me, it was fine — as long as they were fast enough that they quickly zipped out of eyesight. But if they were within reach, I couldn’t help it — breath ragged, I’d speed up with a singular goal of needing to pass them. It usually fucked up my run, scared strangers, and I’d end up walking the last kilometer or two. Continue reading “Pacing”

St. Kilda: Penguins & Lentil as Anything

It’s officially winter in Melbourne, which means wool socks and a jacket and a tuque. Six of us pile into the van. We wrestle with the stubborn reverse and fiddle with the radio, and then we’re driving through the crisp sunshine across town, Glitch Mob carrying us as we wind around construction detours. Continue reading “St. Kilda: Penguins & Lentil as Anything”

Kangaroo Island: Cape du Couedic

20140508_124327

Flinders Chase is a national park that’s bitten off the east tip of Kangaroo Island, and it’s a repository of weird rocks, aww-inspiring animals, and lots of greenery. Our first stop, after harassing the very nice lady at the Visitors Centre, was Cape du Couedic.

The first thing that greets you at Cape du Couedic is a sign describing its gruesome shipwreck, where 32 people perished and the survivors were found with rotting penguins tied around their necks. Naturally, I didn’t get my hopes up about the place. Continue reading “Kangaroo Island: Cape du Couedic”

Kangaroo Island: Flinders Chase

Image

We drive to Flinders Chase, passing dead kangaroo after dead possum after dead unidentified. I’ve never been anywhere with as much roadkill as here, and I say this having grown up in a country that consistently tops rankings for its bad drivers. I focus my eyes upwards, on the gumtrees and the stretches of sheep-peppered land. Continue reading “Kangaroo Island: Flinders Chase”

Grampians National Park

We ended up at Grampians National Park because of Pinterest, which is odd, because usually Pinterest ends up being a repository of recipes I will never cook and far-off places I will never visit. However, when helping my itinerary-obsessed mother plan a trip around Australia, I saw the following picture on Pinterest and decided we had to add the Grampians to the Great Ocean Road leg of our trip:

Screen Shot 2014-05-09 at 10.53.16 AM

Continue reading “Grampians National Park”