A few months ago, I walked the Capital Crescent trail. One of my coworkers, Ginger, expressed interest in walking it with me, but despite our attempts to find a workable date, we stalemated for months: hot weather, expected thunderstorms, and sudden, unexpected work projects or girlfriend issues or last minute happy hours thwarted all plans.
Until this week, when we decided to give Wednesday a try, and the weather more than cooperated, it was damn near almost spring like.
Our plan was to leave work at 3:00 and catch either the RideOn 47 or the WMATA J3 to Bethesda. As fate would have it, we wound up on the J3. Which is not at all a bad route or anything, it’s just that it takes a longer time to get to Bethesda as it stops past Medical Center first. Honestly, we should’ve just waited for the 47. We bailed on the bus long before the Metro station as construction of some sort at Wisconsin and Old Georgetown was really snarling traffic.
The Capital Crescent trails runs from Silver Spring to Georgetown. Total length is marked at 11 or so miles, although the last half miles is under the Whitehurst Freeway. The Bethesda starting point is roughly 3.5 miles into the route. Ginger is a good six inches taller than me, and it’s not at all unfair to say his legs go all the way up to his ass. Seriously, he’s got long legs. I, on the other hand, have short stumpy legs. Fair to say I was a tad worried about the pace he was going to set, and he set what for me would be considered aggressive (and I’m sure for him it was “ambling”).
We averaged about an 18 minute mile. Mile markers seemed to speed past us. We took no breaks, and arrived in Georgetown a few minutes before six. Two miles from the end, the blister I’d acquired on Saturday decided to burst, causing my right foot to alternate between “OH MY GOD MY FOOT IS ON FIRE” to “Okay, this is bearable” to “OH MY GOD I STEPPED ON A LEGO BRICK WITH MY BARE FOOT” and back again. I kept pace with Ginger right until we reached Jack’s Boathouse, at which point I throttled back and he was suddenly like twenty feet ahead of me. Thing is: if not for the blister? I totally could have – and would have – kept going. Georgetown is only a couple of miles from my apartment. Mostly, though, I’m kind of sad that this blister pretty much means I’m going to have to scrap my Long Walk on Saturday. Boo.
We waited under the Whitehurst for about thirty minutes, and then Ginger’s girlfriend, who works up McArthur, arrived in her nice air-conditioned SUV and gave us a ride to my nice frigid apartment. We went up to the roof of my building to enjoy the view and our brews — Abita Purple Haze, if you’re curious — and met a new neighbor of mine, which there’s really not much to say except she’s cute, and enjoys lounging on the roof reading books, which is totally awesome.
By a little after 7:30 I was back in my apartment, soaking my foot in Epsom salt infused water watching Jeopardy. A guy I used to work with at my current day job — Ginger probably started just a week or two after he left — (who also happens to be named Jeff) was on the show last night. He was doing very poorly at the outset, but then came back strong and won the game with his answer: USS Constitution “Old Ironsides.” (I think I’d been checking my email and actually missed what the final question was). He was the only contestant to get the answer right, and he won the game.
FUCKING AWESOME DAY.