May 28, 2008

HOLY frickin' shit!

I'm about to do a half-ironman!
On Saturday, Todd and I will be participating in the Honu Half, an "official Ford Ironman 70.3". They've started calling half-ironmans "IRONMAN 70.3" because it sounds less wussy than HALF ironman, but that's what it is. 70.3 will be the total miles traveled, if I were to swim, bike, then run in a line, which is pretty amazing in itself (from Oakland to Scotts Valley, about?) but the REAL Ironman is double that. That's for the REAL NUTS! (Note: if you follow the link to the Honu half ironman website up there, you should really go check out the May 28th press release. It is just OTT. Actually, don't look at it if you have a problem with GRANDIOSITY.) (Other note: Honu is Hawaiian for 'green sea turtle'. Not the speediest mascot, but so frickin' CUTE.)

Ok so anyway, I think the only thing that convinced me to attempt this ridiculous feat was when I discovered how much being in Hawai'i makes me want to get outside and do stuff, like swimming, and running, and riding. Todd has done this race distance before, but training in San Francisco can be such a hassle (and so COLD, especially the swim part) that I really was never that into the idea of putting in the training time needed to get ready for a HALF ironman.

So one of the most compelling things about this race is that the swim takes place at probably the most beautiful white sand beach on the island, Hapuna. After a 1.2 mile swim in these turquoise waters, where it is possible that I will spot tropical fish or even an eel while racing (it happened to Todd!) we'll head out to the highway on our bicycles and begin an epic journey north up the west side of the island, get almost all the way home, and turn around and come back. The ride takes up the bulk of the race at 56 miles. It can be really brutal but you can see the ocean the entire way, which really helps! (Note: if you look at the gmap I made you can see Kapa'au just east of where we turn around... that's where we live!) (Other note: if you looked closely at the map, yes, we do in fact start the ride at one place and end at another. This course is COMPLEX.)
I've actually done this entire ride by now, and although it is long, I feel fairly confident about it. It's the RUN that I am trying not to let psych me out. It's a half marathon! 13.1 miles! Not only does that sound really long, but it's AFTER everything else! Yes, I will be running a half-marathon on a course I wasn't allowed to train on because it meanders through the golf courses and private roads of the Mauna Lani Resort. I have been practicing a LOT, don't get me wrong, but the farthest I've run to date is 9.5 miles. Only 3.6 more miles, no big thing, RIGHT? RIGHT?

So assuming everything goes as planned, after about 2pm Saturday, I will be HALF IRONWOMAN. And the other half of me will be... regular. ;)

Posted by tammy at 9:54 PM

May 21, 2008

A Shark Drawing for ME

love mah shark!
Originally uploaded by enolarama
I received a surprise envelope in the mail a few weeks ago from the Ellfson family, and when I opened it up it contained this giant shark drawing! This guy now swims determinedly along the wall in our living room here in Hawai'i! See, before the Ellfson children were born, yvil and bobeson commissioned me to do undersea murals for each kiddo's room. Fast forward a few years, and I have heard a few stories now about how special these images are becoming to each of the kids, especially Orion (so far.) At some point he started interacting with the animals and kelp on his walls, touching them, learning their names, etc. Last time I went to visit he told me that his favorite was the big leopard shark above the closet. I guess my name came up again recently when yvil was wearing one of my necklaces -- Orion liked it and she explained that I drew it. She was wearing the kelp crab, which is also featured on Orion's wall. This particular kelp crab was included in the mural because of a funny kelp crab encounter I had while diving with Bob right before painting the mural, so it is very linked to the E's in my mind. Anyway, they talked about me, and the mural, and decided to draw me a picture! Apparently it didn't take long for Orion to decide the subject and the SIZE of the shark drawing (pretty much life-size, and I think about the same size as the shark on the wall.) With some help from mom he and Marina made me this awesome picture, which fits perfectly on the big blank wall above my computer here and makes me smile whenever I look at it :) It is hard to describe how special it is to me that my animal images are important in the lives of these kiddos. I was so excited about how they turned out, I hardly thought about how significant the murals would be in the lives of these children -- they are staring at them every day and night as they lay in bed, becoming intimately familiar with every brushstroke and every creature I created. It just delights me to hear how as these two get older they interact with the murals more, talk about them, and learn from them. And I love that I can somehow be a little part of my friends' kids lives on such a constant basis, even if I don't see them that often.
Posted by tammy at 7:25 PM

May 12, 2008

aloha! I'm still here!

I feel like so many of my blog posts begin with "OMG I've been so busy sorry I haven't posted for so long!" And here I am again. I HAVE been so frickin' busy, mostly with work-related stuff! I come to Hawai'i and suddenly my illlustration/jewelry/art career is on this big upswing -- are these two things connected? Really hard to tell! I mean, I have made a lot of effort finding local stores to sell my jewelry, and that's been successful, but I've also been getting more stores and orders from elsewhere, and illustration jobs, etc. It almost feels like since I've come to Hawai'i all these obstacles have vanished from my life, and I feel like there may be a connection in a more sort of vague spiritual Buddhist kind of way, like, I'm doing the right thing for myself by coming to this place, and now I'm really getting on the right path and things are going well, but who knows. I don't even know if I believe in that kind of thing. But anyway, it's all very exciting.
So, of course now I've gotten to this point where I have so much to say I put off posting because it will take too much time to discuss it all! So I guess I'm just going to have to break it up into a few posts.
I miss you all SO much. But the more time we spend here the more I feel like "now WHY was it exactly I felt I needed to go back to the bay area?" However, we ARE coming back, we just got our tickets for July 2 (which made me feel a little melancholy) and I can't WAIT to see you all. I'm sure once I return I will be so happy to be there ... I think I'm missing it less because I know I AM coming back. Anyway, ALOHA!

Posted by tammy at 10:39 PM