Posted by: Sean | August 28, 2014

Harry Snow Trip Day 4 – Clear Snow

Tuesday August 26, 2014

We woke up to a rainy day, which is never a lot of fun.  I went up the hill with Paul, as we heard that some of the guys were across the other side of the hill.  We headed up and across to a couple of t bars, and it was a white out.  We were flat out seeing far in front of us, and it was a bizarre feeling of everything white, and not knowing the slope of the hill until you start speeding up unexpectedly.

We battled on for an hour, and called time.  Each time thoughts of heading out came up, the rain came again.

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On the t-bar, before the white out

Lots of time was spent, chatting with fellow harriers.

Following are some pics of one of the units, Unit 3, which 5 of us are staying in this year.  Nigel and Paul has the master bedroom with en suite, Gilly and I in the 2nd bedroom, and Pete has the window bed – the best view of the mountain!)

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 Pete’s bed for the week

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looking down to units 5 & 6, where the rest of the Harry crew are staying

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Thoughts of our family holiday in Mürren with the following 2 items in our unit.

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Today’s song of the day is The Cult – Rain

Posted by: Sean | August 28, 2014

Harry Snow Trip Day 3

Monday August 25, 2014

As it tends to happen on these trips, the first night on the snow is celebrated with a few beverages and banter, and there are usually a couple of people that push on.  I pulled stumps at a reasonable hour, and got up around 3:30 to hear the party still going. I headed over to the party unit at 7:00 to grab a coffee and found a couple of people still going!

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the bar

It was a glorious morning on the mountain, and I always have a smile from ear to ear when I skid down the hill from our unit to the chairlift.
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on the lift to the top

 

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After carrying some leg injuries for the last couple of months that I couldn’t shake, I decided the last week to see a sports doctor, who diagnosed a couple of issues, which were confirmed with a MRI.  The main issue is a tear in meniscus, a fissure tear but a bit a of horizontal tear as well.  So I probably shouldn’t be skiing this week.  The reason I am mentioning this (besides  remembering this in the future) is that I am not skiing as hard / fast as I would normally, as I am doing my best to not injure it further.  Unfortunately, by favouring my knee, and skiing more tentatively, I am more prone to catching an each in soft snow.

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I wasn’t so sure about the soft conditions of the snow, and how the knee would hold up, but had a great session with some of the guys, and then just Gilly and I.


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Fire and ice ingredients

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Glenn and Gilly prepping dinner

 

I was made this drink which is one that Sue will love, which was named a Jaffa, as that is what it tasted like

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The Jaffa

Today’s song of the day is TISM Greg the stop Sign as it was played and sung loudly by a few folk today.

 

Posted by: Sean | August 25, 2014

Harry snow trip day 2 – on the snow

Sunday August 24, 2014

Well I better start this post by saying, I get to claim “world’s worst father” as I am heading to the snow, as Ryan is celebrating his 16th birthday. Sorry buddy, I will definitely try to go some way to making it up.

The bus picked us up from our digs around 8:00, and Bruce dutifully handed out the shopping lists for all to pair up. (Great job Bruce).  We needed every minute of the 30 minutes that the bus driver allowed us to stop to get through it!

 

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Heading to snow

 

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One of the many heavily laden shopping trolleys

 

John C was already on the mountain and had scoped out that one of the units would be available earlier than the 4:00 checking time.  We arrived at our units around 12:00, quick unpack of all the groceries in the unit, quick welcome beverage, get changed and head down to the village to grab our gear.

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One year I will get boots that don’t hurt

Our lift passes are 5 days, but they through in a bonus half day from 1:00 the previous day, so we were lined up and ready to go shortly there after!

It was a glorious afternoon, and Gilly and I got in some great runs, heading up to the highest lifted point in Australia

 

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There is a bar on the mountain, black sallees, that has become a harry institution for popping in during Schnappy Hour.  It has a magnificent outlook of the thredbo valley, a great selection of beers and shots, and my favourite beer on tap!

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My skis parked outside sallees

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Budvar on tap!

There is also another tradition that any new folk on the tour, get to try a shot of a drink that isn’t on the menu, and very much an under the counter drink. If it’s name of “Undertaker” doesn’t put you off, the sight of the floating chilli pulp should…  Pete stepped up with John G placed an undertaker in front of him.

 

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The Undertaker

Part of the ski patrol / rescue’s role is the sweep down the mountain ensuring that no one is left out over night.  This included clearing out bars such Sallees.  There have been many an interesting trip back down the mountain with the ski patrol shadowing is.  Things have sometimes got a little “loose”.

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even our best skier Kim has a rest post sallees

 The first night tends to be a little excitable as people get to catchup for the first time, in some cases, a year.  Different drinks are inevitably mixed up from the bar.  There is a bar tax of 2 bottles of spirits, 1 being a higher shelf variety.

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Fire and Ice shots come out

Last year, in a moment where some people may have been tired and emotional, the idea of having Hamster onesies to wear was put forward and met with lots of laughs.  Ted managed a great feat, in that he remembered the conversation firstly, and then order 14 of the onesies to bring along.  Looking into the unit, it would have appeared to be a secret cult (and it is).

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Oh my…

 

Today’s song of the day is The Verve – Bitter Sweet Symphony as it I missed the bear’s birthday, but got to ski.  Sue also bought me this CD for Christmas in 1997 when we were living in London, and we knew at the time that we were expecting Ryan to join us the following year.

Posted by: Sean | August 24, 2014

Harry snow trip day 1 – Journey to Queanbeyan

Saturday August 23, 2014

Well I decided to dust of the blog again, to record some of the going ons of the annual Harry trip. Harry comes from a youtube video of Harry the hamster that did the rounds on one of the early trips.

This year, I was a very late starter, like a few weeks before the trip, and once the to and fro of whether there was a spot, should we get an additional unit, what is the cost impact of the existing crew was determined to be acceptable to some of the elders on the tour, I had a green light.  Nigel also had a late start at the same time.

Most years when I am at the snow, I arrange flowers to be delivered to Sue’s work, but rather than be too overly predictable, I grabbed them beforehand this year.  It is the absolute least I can do to get away, and leave the family run arounds that is left behind…
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Before heading off to the airport, there was still kids sport to attend.  Tegan’s netball was cancelled early because of the rain, but Rugby is never cancelled … Sloshing around in the wet looked a lot of fun, and as strange as it may seem, I totally love being under an umbrella watching either of the kids play.

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not too dirty…

Gilly kindly provided the pickup at 12:30 and we headed to the airport to catchup with the 10 of us who were heading from Brisbane.  I met 3 of the 4 uninitiated Harry tour members, as we had a beer or 2 (at airport / snow prices) and discussed tales of tours past.

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 IMG_1857Gilly and I, toasting the trip

 It was a nice uneventful flight, well except for when Nigel spotted that someone had moved seat so he would pilfer there snack box as they didn’t need it anymore.  Then she came back, and must have wondered where her half eaten snackbox had gone…

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Kim arranged new digs, for the overnight in Queanbeyan.  Traditionally we have always travelled on the Sunday morning from Brisbane, and not getting to the snow until quite late, sometimes without even getting on the snow, and then on the last day (Friday) travelling to Queanbeyan to stay Friday night, and the then travel out Saturday.  This year has a new, improved plan.  Stay in Q Friday night (no spirits policy enforced though), for early get away to the snow in the morning.  Friday travel from the snow to CBR airport and home, is also great.  Get home for Saturday kids sport!

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We had quite a lot of beer left over last year, that Bruce dropped a carton to his cousin’s house last year (in Canberra), who then dropped said carton to the motel waiting for us as well…

We headed to the local leagues club to watch the Bledisloe cup game.  We led in the first couple of minutes 3-0, and that is the last I will report on the game…

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to the leagues club, follow the rainbow

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Stupid rugby game…

Nine of us decided to go to an indian restaurant we passed on the way to the club for dinner.  When the time came, there were only 4 takers, which may be why the restaurant pad us back by taking an insane amount of time for our meals to come out…

An early’ish night to bank some sleep, though the crew upstairs sounded like they may have settled in for a session.

Song of the day:  Queanbeyan isn’t quite in the middle of no where, but our motel is close to it  Hot Hot Heat – Middle Of Nowhere 

Posted by: Sean | July 3, 2014

GC Half 2014 – Sounds to get me through

Well a shorter distance then planned last Christmas, a story for another time, but it means a mighty cull of the songs I have noted through the year.  3 sleeps to the half marathon and the mixed tape is sorted…

So my self made rule of no songs from last year posed a bigger problem than I had thought, but got there in the end. There’s 80′s, pop, punk, Brisbane bands, a riff I rediscovered this year at the Day on the green, of course the 90′s is represented, some songs released this year and a tip of the hat to Rik Mayall with his passing this year. My favourite band also needed a cameo, as well as my old favourite from late 80′s/90′s…

Every single song holds a story for me that I can think about whilst doing the shuffle, pushing ensuing pain to the rear of my thoughts, well that’s the plan anyway.

In the lyrics of one of the songs has the name of this blog, anyone? (You should know this one Sue)

Reflektor – Arcade Fire 
Sat By the Ocean – Queens of the Stone Age 
Do I Wanna Know? – Arctic Monkeys
Beach – San Cisco 
I Hear Motion – The Models
Mad World – Tears for Fears
Today – Smashing Pumpkins
Unsent Letter – Machine Gun Fellatio
Roscoe – Midlake
Cash – The Panics
I Wanna Be Adored – The Stone Roses
All I Know – Washed Out
Raspberry – Beret Prince  ** Sorry all youtube audio blocked for this track
Supersonic – Oasis  
Sich Offen – Not From There
My Pal – God
Aloha Steve & Danno – Radio Birdman
Berlin Chair – You Am I
Heart Shaped Box – Nirvana
Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t ‘ve?) – Buzzcocks
Pepper – Butthole Surfers
Ace Of Spades – Motörhead
DC – Died Pretty
House Of Cards – Radiohead
In Between Days – The Cure
Orange crush – R.E.M.
Reptile – The Church
Mexican Radio – Wall of Voodoo
Wolf Like Me –  TV On The Radio
Vasoline – Stone Temple Pilots
True Faith – New Order
Gonna Make It – Vydamo
Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains) – Arcade Fire
Without me – Eminem

Posted by: Sean | June 1, 2014

Moogerah

Last weekend 75% of the Kelly Gang headed to Lake Moogerah, for an overnight camp with the Whites and Gills.  We travelled out Saturday morning and the fog looked really eerie from Willowbank, all the way to the campsite.  It soon burned off to a glorious day!  We have visited here before a couple of years ago, but only for the day.

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Spirits were lifted on sighting that the bankcard is back!

 

Whilst there is a bit of effort with the packing, setup / pull down for one night, it was well worthwhile!

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Home for a night

Thanks to the rest of the crew for a great time on and off the water (Thanks for taking your boat Chris!)

So much fun on the water!

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our camp in the background

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Until there was a blow out with one of the toys…

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no hot melt gun, duct tape will have to do

 

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Kids settling in with the fire




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Great to have Chris’s boat with us

I have been looking at other camping options and working on the other 25% joining us for the next one. :)

Song of the day is Kasabian – Fire, because well fire…  I was getting a little sleepy sitting around the fire at 7:00 PM but we were all still there after 11:00, with marshmallows of course.

 

 

Posted by: Sean | February 23, 2014

Bills

I happened to be in Sydney for the first time for quite some time.  Past Sean had to travel quite often to Sydney for work, and at one stage it was every week for 6 months (3 days per week).  Tough for all concerned…

Well I got to attend a conference with the team last week, and whilst I wont be talking about:

  • The great accomodation we had
  • Awesome conference, including the location at Luna Park
  • Getting to run across and back on the Harbour bridge and past the opera house
  • Walking to the conference across the bridge

What I do want to talk about is I got to have scrambled eggs at Bills restaurant in Surry Hills on the Saturday.  The fellas I was staying with, looked like they were going to have a sleep in, so I headed off from our digs, near Town Hall, off to Surry Hills.  To give some context, I am a bit of a fan of Bill Granger, and I may have a couple of his cookbooks and have enjoyed his tv shows.

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Bills books less one shown below

I loved the walk there and the character of the terrace homes of Surry Hills.  Once arriving at bills, there were people pouncing (in a non-pounce way) as tables became available,  As I was a party of 1, I could be slotted between a family and a group of Japanese visitors at a long table.

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bills at Surry Hills

I didn’t have any hesitation in ordering, I knew what I was having and that was his famous scrambled eggs.  It lived up to it’s reputation and I was thankful of the walk there and back would put some dint into the calories of the cream that makes it so good.

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A look inside bills

I enjoyed my brekky, and the coffee was superb, and I was good to go, another tick off the bucket list.  The price was also very reasonable.

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Hope to get here again

After being home for a day, I decided to make something from bill’s repertoire, and one that is a hit with the family, well at least the most senior member of team K (power not age).

DSCF4748A bit of a favourite in the house this one

Song of the day this week is a very daggy song from way back, that I hadn’t even thought about until Bill started using it in every episode of his cooking show.  Behold the Dynamic Hepnotics – Soul Kind of Feeling 

Posted by: Sean | February 16, 2014

Been away from the blogosphere

Hello there sole reader :)

I have started many a post, but they are always so long and epic, that I decided that I can just post short posts if I like.  I remembered that the reason for this thing, was for R&T to read off in the future to see what was going on at the time.

So, boy am I glad it is 2014.  2013 was hard. Very Hard work all round, but things are looking on the up, which has taken longer to build momentum.  In the main, I am talking about the setup of the new business, but it has bled into other areas, one of which being fitness.

My fitness has slid since the half marathon last year, and in a moment of delirium around Christmas, I decided that I am training for the full marathon in July.  20km’s this morning in humid windy conditions was trying!

A pic I grabbed of the Daily Runner group on our volunteer day at park run below.

DR volunteers at park run

DR volunteers at park run

Anyhow, be ready to see more of my posts here, so much to catch up on.

Song of the day comes off my current long run playlist Arcade Fire - Reflektor which is 7.5 minutes of goodness, and a great tempo for running awkwardly.

Posted by: Sean | July 21, 2013

Another teenager in the house

It was Tegan’s Birthday on Friday, and she has entered her teens.  With a sleep over organised with friends on Saturday, it became a 3 day Celebration of Tegan.

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What greeted Tegan on her birthday

We moved all the photography gear out of the studio and converted the room into Tegan’s party room.

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Sue did a great job decorating (I didn’t get enough shots of the room draping)

Tegan had one friend arrive early and they started baking brownie surprise for the other 6 that would be arriving. That would go along with all the other treats that threaten the waistline of the author if the kids don’t finish them off.

A work mate of Sue’s (Hi Julie), has a daughter that works wonders with cupcakes, and made the delicious morsels seen below.

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These tasted as good as they looked

Presents were opened, beds claimed, and off to have some fun in the party room.

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I didn’t see this guy arrive, hope he appreciates very loud noise

Tegan’s choice of dinner for her friends was pizza, and whilst we love mexican, cooking up mexican for a third night, may have been a bit much…

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this has all of the carb food groups covered

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do we really need ice cream as well (it was very good though)

Somehow, a onesie dress standard was called for, and Sue’s was liberated for Tegan.

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photo courtesy of Tegan

Much dancing, singing, pass the parcel, snacks, movies, popcorn and ‘minimal’ incidents ensured a great night and morning.  Sue seems able to cope with the noise made by the girls, but Ryan and I needed to retreat to cope for a while.

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glow sticks light the path to the party room

Tegan has really enjoyed sewing since doing it at school in the first semester this year. She learned how to make a cute bag, and decided to make one for each of those that came to her party.  She now has requests in for a larger model from her mum.

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great job with the bags!

Well we managed to survive, and the girls had a great time, and my hearing is just starting to return to normal…

Today’s song of the day is an old favourite of mine teenager of the year – Lo-Tel

Posted by: Sean | July 7, 2013

GC Half marathon – Race day

It was an early start, with the alarm #1 going off at 3:02, so alarm #2 didn’t need to come into play.  Why I picked 3:02 and not 3:00 would require a separate blog post, and one that may drive away my 2 readers with the author’s wackiness…  I did sleep well knowing everything was packed / ready, and I just need to get up, and go pretty much.

GC (1 of 2) everything ready to go (in case of sleep in)

I grabbed a light breakfast and caught up with the news overnight, seems the watching of the Wallabies Lions decider may not be as urgent given the result.  I heard a sleepy ‘good luck’ from someone upstairs that sounded like Sue in a dreamlike state.

It was a good run down the coast, sipping on my water and chanting don’t go out too fast.  Parking was easier than expected and I found myself in the race precinct around 5:00, an hour before the start.  I dropped off my bag, and made the regulation nervous toilet stop, after the regulation nervous toilet line wait. I then lined up at the barriers, to be let into the starting area, and made sure the playlist was loaded and working.

The gates were opened and a little jog to the starting zone, and an underdone warmup was complete.  I couldn’t see the 2:00 pace starting area, so I hung back behind the 1:50, and let the massess press past me. (I didn’t want to be that guy slowing up the pace). I caught fellow parkrunner and daily runner, John C at the start, and I said don’t wait for me, run your own race.  There must have been 1 or 2 thousand people ahead of us, and as the start got closer, lots of nervous banter about their garmin’s dropping the satellites again.  I must have played with my watch every 15 seconds to ensure it was good to go, as it would be crucial to my run pace.

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In my pre-race test of my playlist, I lined up the play list, stuck a headphone in the ear to test all good.  Seems it was the only headphone that would work…  Jiggling the jack for the first k had intermittent success, so I resigned to the fact that my right ear only having music, no use stressing about it now…

Near the start, Matt gave a shout out and a high 5, which was great that he spotted us.  He then ran the marathon, starting in just over in hour in a blistering time of 3:05!   I am guessing his wife Rowena, must have been around me somewhere in the field, but she tore away and finished in 1:51.  I am so glad I didn’t bump into her and try and keep pace…

Running along, with an eye firming on my pace, it was great to see lots of support for runners by their family and friends, but it extended to all who ran past.  I am pretty sure the multiple kids that I high fived as I passed, gave me extra energy!  There were people dressed up in all sort of gear on the side of the road, and I loved an old couple standing their, banging pots with spoons (saw them at 2km and 19km), crazy elderly folk!  There were a lot of positive comments along the route, and coming home in the last 1.5 km it really helped!

During the race when mr brain was trying to let me know what a stupid idea this was, I started thinking about various things, and I spotted landmarks in Sue and I’s earlier life.  I passed by our first unit we moved out together in (1990), where the grand hotel used to be, the bottle shop at Runaway Bay I worked at part time, after we bought our first place and  we needed some extra coin, and on it went…

As I started back in the field, though I didn’t know how far after the start I actually started, I was worried I wouldn’t see the black balloons. The pace runners have different coloured helium ballons attached to them, and the 2:00 target was black.  I passed the 2:10, and was hopeful of spotting the black.  I spotted them in the distance around the 9k mark, and I think I caught them around the 12k mark.  The pace runner was dressed as a bee, and looked to be doing it easy, letting people know when the next water station was and getting photos taken.

I pushed on at my 5:30 pace, and managed to finish (my garmin says) 1 second ahead of the target pace.  I felt Elated!  My knees did not.

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Really happy with my time of 1:56:37

My garmin map and pace for the event is here

I caught up with John post race, and we also bumped into Neil who ran a 1:23 which is scary fast!  John said he had “backstage passes” to a special area, so he was going to grab some food, while I grabbed my bag.  And that was the last I saw of him… So many people and he didn’t have a phone, oh well, next time.

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Finishers shirt and bling

IF, and a big IF, I decide to do it again, it would be great to have the family down and stay the night before and after, as it had a fantastic atmosphere, and would be great to experience the event more than that of a race blow in.

Those beers I mentioned in a previous post will certainly get a nudge this afternoon.

Thanks to support from the local runners that gave great advice, and especially Paul H and Werner.  Cheers!

The song of the day, is off the playlist from today Queens of the Stone Age – Go with the Flow, and it was playing as planned as I approached the finish.  I did however pause the music to soak in the last 500m.

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