Monday, July 23, 2007

Running With Patience

What? KUL Melawati 10K Run

Where? Padang Fasa 5, Taman Melawati, Kuala Lumpur.

When? 22 July 2007 (Sunday), Supposed to start at 7:00am but delayed to 7:30am

Who? Organised by MPAJ, New Balance & Vernier (No FTAAA in this run)

How Far? 10km (as stated in the entry form but please read on….)

Patience

noun

1. The ability to endure delay, trouble, pain or hardship in a calm and contained way.Thesaurus: forbearance, endurance, perseverance, stoicism, calmness, composure, restraint, cool (slang).

2. Tolerance and forbearance.

3. Perseverance.

Etymology: 13c: French, from Latin patiens, from patientem - suffering.

My patience was really tested to the max the moment I registered for this run. It supposed to be held at Padang Merbok at 3 June 2007. Then without much explaination, it was postponed to an "unspecified" date with no option to cancel the registration.

So, we waited. My feelings were divided when they announced the race was going to be held at Taman Melawati on 22 July. Happy because it would a new route - new things to see and experience. But on the other hand, the new place was damn freaking far on the other side of the city. (Re: less sleep and hefty taxi fare).

I decided to go for the run anyway since I have no other run to go to.

I booked a cab the night before the run. I know it the damage to my pocket was going to be huge with the after midnight surcharge, tolls and booking fee. No choice. For the love of running, I would! Heheh!

The cab arrived about 5:15am even though I booked it at 5:30am. Better early than late. So, I arrived at the start point approximately at 6:00am. The field where the race supposed to start was dark. Sounds of nighly creatures filled the chilly air. It was a perfect setting for a horror movie. I wondered if I was at the right field....(Insert shudder here)

I sat patiently waiting by the field with my loyal Sony MP3 player pumping the music from MIMS and Diddy. Surprisingly no mosquitoes.

Next to the field, I saw people scrambling to set up the tents. I think someone must have forgotten to rent the generator. There was no electricity. So, the officials had to set up their table underneath the streetlight. Sad but true.(See above picture).

6:30am. Runners were seen trickling to the field. But the officials were still scrambling around. Lots of yelling. Lots of phone calls. Lots of running around. I observed patiently from afar. It would take a miracle for them to start on time.

7:00am. No sign of a start. I left the scrambling officials alone and walked around the field, admiring the beautiful scenery. I took this nice picture of the hill(not sure if its name is Melawati Hill) enveloped by morning mist. It reminded me of Mt. Kinabalu.

There were some confusions about which direction of the START. Initially, the runners were facing the mosque direction. But later we were told to face the other way. (Insert "Be patient..." here)

As you can see here, some runners (in white tees on the left) were asked to move to the back which used to be the front a minute earlier.

And we thought the wait was over,..the African (can't assume all black runners are Kenyan!) runners were asked to leave the start line. Yikes! What now?

There were some talking. There were some animated hand gestures. The manager of the African runners was also questioned to settle some seemingly dispute.

Not sure what was going on there. I no speak African! Heheh! Notice the looooooooong legs....

After squabbling for 10 minutes or so, some of the African runners were allowed to return to the start point. A few were turned away. The time was 7:30am. Can we start now? I have been patient enough.

"I have air horn and I am not afraid to use it!"

Blast off!!!

Jack and Jill and whole lotta people ran up the hill...

The route was rather pleasant. The scenic hills. The soothing greens. The fresh morning air. All these added to the joy of a morning run! Simply fantastic.

We ran though the Melawati residential areas, passing by some schools, shoplots and more houses.

Hmmm....Should I stop for roti canai? Very tempting....Heheh!

Rolling down the hill...

Scenic horizon. Can you spot the KL Tower and KLCC?

There were two water stations serving 100plus drink.

Cloudy but no rain. Thank you God!

Swaggering back to finish line. But where is the line? Not even the "FINISH" banner.

I was very surprised when I saw my timing for the supposedly 10K run. I finished way way ahead of my personal best. Impossible is everything! I couldn't have finished a 10K run with that kind of timing. Not even when I do not stop for pictures. The route must have been 7K only. I confirmed this with other dissatisfied runners. Killjoy!

Note to the organiser: Please do not cheat your runners. When you put 10K in your entry form, do make sure that the route is actually 10km. Not more. Not less.

The VICO van making its presence felt in the local running scene! Milo monopoly has ended. Heheh! I must say ice-cold Vico is as good as Milo when it comes to thrist quenching after a run. Yum!

Sneak Peek 1: Adidas King of the Road (5 August 2007) vest. It's fierce yellow with three signature black stripes! Simple yet stylish design. You'll float like a butterfly and sting like a bee...Buzz! Buzz!

Sneak Peek 2: The Klang New Balance 12K (2 Sept 2007) finisher medal design. It's gonna be square, so you gotta be there!

I must say with eveything else gone wrong, the organiser managed to get one thing right - the medal. It is a very nice. (Insert Borat's accent here). But then again, shouldn't it read 7k?

Event T-Shirt - Corrected.

See you next year. NOT!

KUL 10K will go down in the history as one of the worst races ever organised in Malaysia. I suddenly missed the officials from FTAAA very much. Heheh!


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