Today felt like the real deal. There's been so much rushing around the last few days, with the feeling of being perpetually late with a mounting to do list poking me us in the back, which just shows that this is going to be some task, just to get halfway to California. We loaded the hire car up from the motel, which is a pretty onerous task and one that I'll be glad to see the back of when we get the RV and have the opportunity to have things in a “place” rather than just stuffing everything in a bag. Nads seems to be a lot better at this than me. I'm just not a morning person. I set off in gorgeous sunshine outside the hotel and ran down Government, which is the street name for Highway 90 in Mobile, past some great old houses, including a monster one for sale which would make a great venue for a commune. Maybe after the run. It was about 30C at the start which was just starting to feel pretty oppressive when the heavens absolutely opened and I was running in a two inch river within about 5 minutes. This was pretty much the story for the rest of the day, but it was actually alright and felt like a bit of a laugh. We had (still do…) a lot of stuff to organise in the afternoon, so we called it quits at a petrol station just at the junction for Bayou la Batre and headed to Beef O'Brady's in Tillman's Corner where they ploughed through their myriad of sports channels and also, accidentally onto some “arty” channels before finding Liverpool Chelsea and, over a pint of Fat Tyre pale and a gallon of lemonade we saw Klopp's boys storm the Bridge and all was well with the world.
Roadkill count = 2: Raccoon and armadillo.
Being recognised count: 1
Day 2: Start = Malaga Inn. Finish = Citgo Quick Stop on Highway 90, just shy of Irvington 16.35 miles
The following morning's routine was helped by the fact that we were staying at the lovely Red Roof motel for two nights, so less mucking about with bags ensued, which was fortunate as a bomb appeared to have gone off in my kit bag and spread my kit to all four corners of the room. This seems to happen a lot. We trekked off to the Citgo Quick Stop with it's two massive cockerels and crossed the railway tracks, heading south to Bayou la Batre, which was where Bubba grew up. This was actually a 20 mile detour that I probably should try to avoid making a habit of, but Forrest would have wanted it that way. The day started in light rain and not too warm but soon became roasty hot and humid with it. I ran past a portaloo with “Gotta Go” written on it and as Forrest said, when he needed to go...he went. So did I. I had some roadworkers inquire about my sanity as I ran past them – they'd seen me running the day before and couldn't get their head around it. To be fair, I'm struggling myself. I reached the water's edge to find Nads had already scoped out the local wildlife, with pelicans kamikaze diving into the bay and hermit crabs that would hide if you got too close, only to re-emerge about 10 seconds later. I'd have laid low a little longer, personally. I gave the lady at Becca's Rough Water Bait and Tackle the sweatiest five dollars ever for a Powerade and sheepishly explained why it was in such a state. She was down with it.
I'd run past a lot of shrimping boats in the final mile or two and watched a few head out into the Gulf of Mexico. As it's classed as the Atlantic, I got in (well, paddled) and took a sample of water, which I'll hopefully mix with some water from the Pacific if I get there and tick “trans-continental run done” off the list. We stood about taking it all in for a bit and as I set off on a short run back to town I was feeling a bit ropey/heat stressed and got to the Waffle House in a bit of a state. The staff there were lovely and Leigh in particular was fascinated by this all and gave us $10 for the WWF as she LOVES her animals! I got about 1500 calories in, in the form of hash browns covered in chilli, a burger and 4 refills of Coke. As we were trying to get a marathon in after a late start I set off a bit quickly and felt rough for the next five miles. Things were about to get worse as I failed to see my turning and ended up not too far from where we started and losing about 4 or 5 miles, which hurts, that late in the day. I was in a stinker of a mood when I got to where Nads had relocated to and nearly packed it in for the day, but decided to push on, as I imagine this sort of setback isn't going to be a rarity and I just need to front up. 4 more miles brought up the marathon and we headed back for a Mexican. P.S. Saw some awesome Trump and Clinton Hallow'een masks. Might get a couple and try running in 'em, see how that goes... Maybe not. :D
Roadkill count = 5: 2 armadillos, 2 possums and a raccoon.
Being chased by a dog count: Breed – Chihuahua. Persistence – High. Fear level – 2.
Day 3: Start = Citgo Quick Stop on Highway 90, just shy of Irvington. Finish = 4 miles west of St. Elmo. 27.78 miles