Busy busy blogger!

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It has been a few weeks since I have even logged onto WordPress, much less blogged.  I wrapped up my career at my police department, took an amazing week a half off and started my new job as a Sheriff’s Deputy.  Here is a bit of a recap of my last few weeks (with some runs thrown in of course!).

My last night at work was a midnight shift (10pm-6am).  I came into work and spent much of the first few hours laughing and crying with the on duty guys.  My personal gear was packed, my equipment returned and there was nothing left to do but wait for 6:00AM.  I am so blessed to work with the people I did, as they didn’t leave my side all night.  Normally I worked solo after 1:00AM, but not this night.  One of my co-workers, Mark, stayed until 3:00AM with me.  We caught up, reminisced and talked about life.  I am tearing up again as I write this. Best co-workers ever.  No sooner did Mark leave and the phone in the building rang.  It was Dawn from a nearby agency.  She came by to spend time with me before my shift was over.  Dawn and I have been friends for years (1998 or so) and share a deep love for horses.  We would often get on a tangent about horses in front of our co-workers, causing groaning and eye rolling.  We loved it.  Not long after Dawn arrived, another one of my co-workers arrived.  It was 4:30 AM at this point and Tim had come in just to see me.  I couldn’t believe I had this many visitors.  The night went by very quickly and soon it was 6:00AM.  I dressed down, locked my locker for the final time and walked away.  I cried as I drove home, as much for the end as I did for the happiness of a new beginning.

The photo above was taken during my week off.  Amanda and I went to the beach for the first time ever since I started this career.  Working in a tourist driven beach community completely turned me off from wanting to be there,  How different it is to just sit and read and talk by the ocean.  I now remember why I loved it so much as a teenager.

I almost forgot, the week leading into my last shift was the three race run!  I already posted my recap from Harmony Hill, but here is the Thunder Chicken and Kingman Farm.

Thunder Chicken:  Thursday night 5k around downtown Portsmouth.  Intended to run slow…. instead ran in the 7s for the first time ever to the finish line and finished 4th in my age group.  WOOOO!  Followed this up with a seafood dinner and ice cream with Amanda and Tony. Then I waddled into work for my last shift 🙂

Kingman Farm:  Celebrated with Eric way too much the night before (think wine, filet mignon and cheesecake) and almost threw up four times on this course.  However, here is my finish line picture:

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Definitely the first time I have ever run a race hung over and definitely sure I was saying I needed to throw up right before this picture was snapped.  Tony was behind me pushing me to finish so I wouldn’t puke on the rest of the runners.  Good news…. didn’t puke.  Won’t do that again though!  No more hangover after the race was done!

Mountains!!!

Katie, Steve, Tony and I knocked out Little Haystack, Lincoln and Lafayette during my week off too.  Here are a few pictures from our nine mile power hike:

trailWe took Falling Waters Trail to Little Haystack and jumped on the Franconia Ridge trail to travel to Lincoln and Lafeyette.

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From Little Haystack towards Lincoln.

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Goofy selfie.  Rocking my new Buff (Thanks to Lise and Tony!!!) and loving the woods!

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Happy buff-wearing hikers…. plus Steve.  Have you met Katie… the gansta’?

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Snack time with Snickers outside the Greenleaf hut.   I was practicing good sharing.

Hike record 08/07/13:

Weather was comfortable in the 70s with clouds and sun.  Trails used:  Started on Falling Waters Trail to Franconia Ridge Trail.  Took Greenleaf Trail to the hut and came back down via Old Bridle Path.  Seven hours total (estimated to be an 8 hr. hike)

Saddleback Run:

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My final run of my vacation was from Northwood Meadows to Saddleback Mountain tower.  This was approximately 8 miles and here is a quick shot of a cool log crossing.  My legs were crap but I was a happy to run.  All in total, I did 28 miles my week off with about 5,000 feet of elevation (or more).  I spent this last week getting to know my new job, participating in some very physically demanding training and attempting to rest as often as possible in preparation to sweep for the New Hampshire 100k tomorrow.  Look for a post on that adventure.  Should be a personal distance record for me if all goes well!

Thanks for following along on my adventures!

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Tears….. here’s to an end and a beginning

It’s been a hell of a month.  Those who have been following know I have been through some tough training/race decision, went back to working nights, went through a hiring process and am now in the process of saying goodbye to the one place I have worked for the last 13.5 years.  The place where I grew up.

This week has been a tearjerker.  As the reality of moving on really hit me, I went through a variety of emotions.  I have dealt with those in a variety of ways:

1) Obsessively clean:  I was actually using a tiny little brush to scrub the grout on my bathroom floor on Tuesday.  That was after loads of laundry, vacuuming, barn cleaning, pet visits and grocery shopping.

2) Run:  Yes, run!  Got in a very solid 8.6 miler on Monday with Katie, Bill and Steve.  It was warm in the 80s and I wore my pack in preparation to sweep for the NH100K.  As usual, I forgot my Ultimate Direction Wink pack was even there and we finished this run in 1:30.  It was a nice mix of trails and roads.

3) Race:  Three races this week!  Here Katie and I are at the Harmony Hill Trail Race Wednesday night:

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Photo SNAPAcidotic

 I took three minutes off my race from two weeks ago on this course.  Did 3.6 in 36:22!  Very fast for me on trail.  I am also getting very strong and confident on downhills.  I love blasting down them!  Our next race is Thursday night.  It is the Thunder Chicken 5K in Portsmouth.  I am going along to run with Amanda.  Then on Saturday, most of us are racing at Kingman Farm for a trail 5K.  Great way to beat stress and sadness!

4) Pack (aka reminisce):  I have taken the last few nights to organize over 13 years worth of  gear, training materials and memories.  I came across some pretty funny documents that I have shared with my co-workers so they can live on.  I also have come across some awesome technology buried in the back of one of my lockers:

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I bet it still works!  I remember using an FM transmitter and playing my CD of choice instead of the radio during my shifts.  Good times 🙂

A very close family friend asked to see where I work one last time, but the timing just didn’t work out.  For her, I took a few shots:

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My locker room (I have been the only female on my department) midst the chaos of my cleaning and organizing.

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The inside of my locker door the way it has looked my whole career.  I never updated it after Eric came along or Tiki, Donkey and Fozzie.  Not really sure why, but I always took comfort in these photos and my motto “This woman can kick your ass.”

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We found these handmade buttons once a upon a time when we were cleaning the old building our department was housed in until 2006.  I have no idea why, but I thought they were entertaining and they have been in my locker ever since. I don’t even know what the top one is!  Regardless, they have always made me smile.

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Finally, I took a shot of my uniform shirt.  Thursday night will be the last time I ever put it on.  I am incredibly sad, mostly because I am a sentimental person and will miss my brothers immensely.   I have been doing so well the past few days, until tonight when one of them hugged me as he went off duty.  Water works.   I will miss these people.  I have no doubt I will stay in touch with each and every one of them, but walking away is incredibly hard.  My stuff is packed, my gear organized to be returned and many of my memories are banked forever.  

So… here is to an end of an era.  The end of my stint as a patrol officer.

Here is to the start of a new era in my law enforcement career.  

Cheers and hugs to all those who have paved the way for me and have encouraged me to work as hard as I can to be both happy and successful.  For that I will forever be grateful.