As I write this, Nick and I are sitting on a train taking us from Padova to Verona—the city of Romeo and Juliet. Coincidentally, we’ve been seeing lots of local Romeos and Juliets around Padova making out on buses, groping on street corners, and seductively feeding each other at restaurants. Ahh, Italy, the country of romance. Luckily, we’re only connecting through Verona on our way to Malcesine, a small mountainous town on Lake Garda.
My birthday was yesterday, and what a great day it was. Nick ran 1:46.89 in his 800 and finished 4th. First through fourth place were all within three tenths of a second of each other. To be honest, we didn’t care that much about his place in an 800 since it’s not his main racing distance. We care about the time; and the time was fantastic. 1:46 is faster than what we hoped at this point. It shows that although he hasn’t done 800m-specific training, his speed is great. With still five weeks to go until Delhi, he’s well ahead of schedule. We’re excited to see what he can do in his 1500m race in Milan on the 9th.
After the race, we hitched a ride into town to have a late dinner to celebrate my birthday. The highlight of the meal was dessert. I had a mascarpone cream with chocolate and macaroons, which was absolutely incredible. It tasted like a fluffier version of the cream layer in tiramisu. Nick had a warm apple cake of some kind, but we can’t remember the name of it.
With a little help from a young Italian boy who spoke good English, we caught the midnight bus back to the hotel. To thank the kid for helping us, Nick gave him his signed race number from the meet. Since Padova is not a big town, most of the locals know about the athletics meet and are interested in it. It was really cute to see this boy and his little sister so excited to have the Nick’s race number.
Today is our first day in Malcesine. We’re relaxing at a beautiful hotel on the lakefront where Nick can run and “ice tub” in the lake afterwards. As I finish writing this, we’ve just enjoyed a delicious five-course meal in the hotel restaurant and I’m now sipping on the complimentary bottle of champagne that was delivered to our room as we watch Michigan football on the Internet. I keep shushing Nick when he yells too loud. GO BLUE!