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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Canning Fun - Summer Garden Salsa

Monday I had every intention of writing about my canning experiences over the past weekend. I put up 10 jars of salsa; oven-dried 2 dozen tomatoes for future use; made two large jars of pickles; and found time to infuse a quart of light olive oil with basil for a winter's fill of fragrant basil oil and pesto possibilities. There are tomatoes yet to be canned; I purchased a case, 25 pounds worth, from Giordanno's in the Italian Market on Saturday. As Liz has been saying for the past 4 days, we have "Too Many Tomatoes", the title of one of her mother's cookbooks from the 1970's. For a gal who can't abide a raw tomato, I sure do like to cook with 'em!
Canning is kind of a lost or completely unknown culinary art for most people. I discovered how easy and fun it is about 8 years ago. While I've not put up jars every summer since, I try to make the effort to can some tomatoes each year. Mostly I tend to oven-dry cherry and small plum tomatoes so that I have some essence of the summer to carry me through the dreary tomato winter season. Even if there isn't the time, energy or inclination to put up salsa or tomatoes in their juices, at the very least I'll make a big batch of basil oil. From this I get a two for one - the oil is infused with the heady scent of basil and the "basil sludge" that I strain off gets frozen and used as a pesto base or as a quick flavor booster in pasta sauces and other pan sauces throughout the winter. Freezing small batches of the basil puree in ice-cube trays keeps them ready for several months. I also like to freeze the chartreuse green oil in small batches, keeping it free from spoiling and growing mold. There's nothing worse than finding that you have Fuzzy Wuzzy the Moldy Bear sleeping in your jar of precious green oil. Anyway, I wanted to share this cooked salsa recipe. It's a variation of the Ball Canning Recipe for Traditional Salsa. I've added peppers, onions and cumin to the mix; it's just not a garden salsa without these flavor boosters. If putting up jars of salsa is too scary for you - just make a batch and refrigerate it for up to 2 weeks. The salsa is so good, fresca or cooked, that it won't last long. However, if you want to impress your friends and have handy holiday gifts, can a double batch. You won't regret it. Buy the freshest and best tomatoes you can find. They are in peak season now, and you can get them inexpensively at Sue's Produce on 18th & Sansom, at any farmer's market, or of course at the Reading Terminal or Italian Markets. As I wrote yesterday, YES YOU CAN, Can!

Summer Garden Salsa

  • 7 Cups tomatoes (5 pounds) – washed, cored, seeded & small dice (peeling is optional but it will yield a smoother and less acidic salsa)
  • 6 Green Scallions – sliced
  • 1 Large White or Yellow Onion - Small Dice
  • 2 Medium/Large Red & Yellow Bell Peppers - seeds & ribs removed and small dice
  • 2 Jalapeno Peppers – minced (for milder salsa – remove seeds & ribs)
  • 4 Garlic Cloves – minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Cilantro – minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Cumin
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • ½ Cup Red Wine Vinegar (5% acidity)
  • Zest of 1 Lime & Juice from Lime
  • 4-6 Dashes Hot Sauce (more or less to taste, optional)


  1. Purchase pint or half-pint jars with bands and lids. Wash canning jars, lids & bands in hot soapy water.
  2. Dry bands & set aside. Place cleaned jars & lids (but not the screw bands) into a large stockpot of water. Bring to a simmer – 180º and maintain at 180º.
  3. Wash and prep all the vegetables. Combine all vegetable ingredients in a large sauce pot. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Carefully remove 1 jar at a time and ladle hot salsa in to hot jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace.
  5. Wipe jar rim clean.
  6. Place lid on jar with sealing compound next to glass. Screw band down evenly and firmly until a point of resistance is met – fingertip tight.
  7. Continue filling jars until all the salsa is used.
  8. Process the filled jars for 15 minutes back in the water-bath stock pot.
  9. Yields about 4 pints.
  10. To double or increase the recipe, make sure you adequately increase the vinegar ratio. The acid is needed to act as a preservative. If you are using larger jars, such as quart jars, increase the time by 5-8 minutes for the water bath portion of the canning process.

Monday, August 25, 2008


I had originally intended to write a post about canning, but as I am sitting here (on my can) in the living room using Liz's laptop computer, we have the Democratic Convention on the television. What a momentous time this is. I truly never thought I would live in a time in America to see someone other than a white upper middle class man become the Democratic Presidential Nominee. The word can has multiple layered meanings, noun, verb, adjective, adverb, Conjunction Junction what's your function? I'm gonna get you there if your very careful...Yes we can - we can elect someone different than the norm for the past 2 centuries. Yes, we can make this country a better place for everyone. Yes, we can make change happen we can believe in. Liz is all weepy here and I find that I am tearing up a bit too. What is it about heartfelt speeches and little kids being themselves, real moments of love and admiration and thousands of balloons and signs in support of a candidate you can believe in? It's about hope and the audacity to believe that American can come together in a unified way and put racism and elitism and classicism aside. I can hope and believe and vote for the party that can put right the wrongs done over the past eight years. I can see a brighter future that includes voices like mine, where people of different colours and ethnic backgrounds are recognized as being members of this country, and not be seen as an unpatriotic outsiders to be deported, shunned or pushed aside to give room to the reigning and dying moral majority. Mr. Barack Obama - YES YOU CAN be my President.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A Bridge not too Far

A body can get bored quickly riding along the same trail week after week. I think the term is cycle fatigue or trail fatigue or some such silliness. It happens though when you do the same exercise or routine frequently. As much as I love to ride and work out, I do find that unless I have a goal or end spot in mind, I can't bring myself to head out to the gym or the trail with the enthusiasm I had a year ago. Once I'm in motion, all is fine. It's getting started that I find dull. So, on Wednesday afternoon I headed over the Benjamin Franklin Bridge and into Camden; a woman alone on a fancy bicycle. How's that for adding a little spice to my ride? Camden, the notorious den of death, drugs and destruction, a mere 4 miles from my cozy neighborhood of shootings, drug wars and debris strewn streets. Not all that much different I suppose... In actuality, the ride to New Jersey (a whole state away!) was kind of cool and eye opening. It doesn't take long to cross the bridge and my vertigo aside, it's great exercise to ascend the bridge as it rises up over the Delaware River and then gently descends down into Camden. What a difference a faster and lighter bike, 20 pounds or so less on my frame and no winter winds blowing in my face makes. I took this little cycle tour back in February with Susan Hill, and I could barely make it back to Philadelphia I was so winded and tired on the climbs. Factor in all the good changes I've made, the trip was, ahem, a piece of cake! Oh, what I would give for a tasty piece of chocolate cake...mmmm Cake. I digress.

As long as I stayed in and around the Rutger's campus, near the Camden River Sharks Campbell Soup Ballpark and along the Riverfront walk, I felt fairly safe. It's easy cycling, as there are not many buildings or obstacles along the way. Reaching the river walk is direct, unlike on the PA side at Penn's Landing, where you navigate the autobahn and take your life into your hands just to get across the mega highway that is Columbus Boulevard aka Delaware Avenue. The New Jersey side of the Delaware is cleaner, well-thought out and planned with people wanting to do things in mind. There is the NJ State Aquarium, the Battleship New Jersey, the Susquehanna Arts Center, Wiggins Park, a Marina, where you don't need a special pass and a gazillion dollars to be allowed into, and there are benches and places to just sit. The river is as dirty in NJ as it is in PA. I saw huge pockets of trash and all manner of plastics washed ashore or along embankments. Trash aside, and it should be cleared and put aside in a more responsible way, the Camden River Walk has life and energy that the Philadelphia side clearly lacks.

I've read stories and hear things on the bicycle blogs about an effort to transform Columbus Boulevard and Penn's Landing into an urban oasis for the City outdoor enthusiasts. I hope it happens in my lifetime while I can still ride a bike and before I'm pushing around on a Rascal Scooter or other motorized wheelchair unit. Aside from being a wee bit concerned about my safety riding alone in Camden,honestly, I feel just as unsafe in Philly, I was happy to be able to ride along the river and just enjoy the car-free and mostly jogger free trails. After this week's Philadelphia Inquirer article about Kelly Drive being over-crowded and the problem with my fellow cycling enthusiasts, taking a trip to Camden feels like a joy ride.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Ole! Garden Medley Margarita Gazpacho

The essence of summer, in a bowl - Gazpacho. I make an unconventional version, one of the many semi-vegetarian soup recipes I learned, at where else? The Reading Terminal Market Mostly Vegetarian Restaurant where I worked in 2002. I really ought to properly thank the woman who ran the business, for she has given me a lifetime of recipes and vegetarian cookery tips that have come in so useful over the years. Her ideas and recipes have become even more important to me this past year as I've slimmed down and lightened my cooking techniques from full fat to low-fat. I have taken several liberties with this riff on a traditional gazpacho, from varying the original Vorspeise recipe to create my own version this past weekend.

Garden Medley Margarita Inspired Gazpacho

  • 1 Small/Medium Onion – quartered (use a Vidalla or Walla Walla Onion they're sweeter )
  • 1 Large Bell Pepper (preferably red) - seeded & quartered
  • 2 Medium cucumbers – peeled, seeded & coarsely chopped
  • 1 Rib Celery – coarsely chopped
  • 2 Medium Carrots – peeled & coarsely chopped
  • 1 Medium Zucchini – coarsely chopped
  • 1 Medium Yellow Squash – coarsely chopped
  • 3 Large Garlic Cloves – peeled & blanched (optional blanching, it tames the garlic bite)
  • 2 Large Fresh Ripe Jersey or Beefsteak Tomatoes or 6 Plum Tomatoes – seeded & quartered
  • 2 Cups cold Tomato Juice or Tomato Sauce - low salt
  • 2 Tablespoons Chopped Fresh Cilantro - reserve some for garnish
  • Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper - to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar or Red Wine Vinegar
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • Hot Sauce – to taste (optional)
  • Tequila & Lime Wedges- for serving
  1. Work in small batches and puree the vegetables, onion through tomatoes, in a food processor and pulse until all the vegetables are finely chopped but not pureed and watery.
  2. When all vegetables have been chopped, place in a large, non-reactive bowl. Set aside.
    Working in batches, take ½ up to ¾ of this chopped vegetable mixture and return to food processor and puree with the tomato juice/sauce. Puree until smooth. (The reserved chopped vegetable will be added to your soup for texture and flavor.)
  3. Pour the puree into the bowl with your reserved chopped vegetables.
  4. Stir into soup mixture the chopped cilantro, salt and pepper, lime juice and vinegar. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  5. Stir in olive oil and add a dash of hot sauce, to taste.
  6. Chill for at least ½ hour before serving and serve cold in well-chilled bowls.
  7. Garnish with additional cilantro.
  8. At serving, spoon a teaspoon of tequila into each serving of soup and spritz with a wedge of lime.
  9. This soup will hold for up to 3 days.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Dog Perfect Days of August

It has been a perfect summer weekend - the weather, outdoor activities, the company and the food. Friday - I woke up at 5:30 am, went biking with my triathlon pal, Sue. Not only did I get up early, but Sue led me on to a two loop course around the Art Museum/River Drive trail, where we logged in 24 miles by 8:30 am! Then it was off to to work for a quiet and short work day. I had a ton of energy and felt great about the early start, which is unusual, since I am NOT a morning person. The bad thing about getting up so early is that by the time it was 9-10 pm I was ready for bed! Scandal! Saturday, I woke early for an early morning appointment. Afterwords, Liz and I treated ourselves to an early morning breakfast at our favorite diner - Sam's Morning Glory. Since we had dinner plans with friends later in the day on Saturday, and a trip to see Liz's family on Sunday, I was inspired to make gazpacho and bake blueberry/raspberry pies to take along for each visit.

Mid-day on Saturday, we hopped in the car and went over river and through the woods to Riverton, New Jersey, to visit with friends Roger and Astrid. A visit with R&A must be like what it was like to leave Philadelphia and go to the "country estates" of Chestnut Hill or Mount Airy in the 1700 and 1800's. When we go to their sprawling late 1800 home near along the riverbank of the Delaware, I feel as though I've headed back in time to a simpler more genteel era. Riverton is small, charming and quaint town; many of the houses are large and ornate in a Cape May kind of Victorian period style. Even though we were only minutes away from Philadelphia, the sounds from the New Jersey side of the Delaware River - the wind whispering through the trees, songs of cat birds, warblers, nut hatches, and screech owls, along with sounds of passing trains and the train horn blowing in the distance erased over a 100 years and miles.
Roger & Astrid, our gracious hosts made the visit even more lovely with the food and activities we shared with them. Roger took us all sailing on his gorgeous, painstakingly restored and well-kept 30 year old wooden sailboat. The weather was perfect, enough of a breeze for a sail out on the Delaware River. We have heard tails of Roger's "high River" adventures, both last night and in the past, but we've not had the opportunity to set foot on his schooner. Invitations had been tendered, but for whatever reason, either we were too busy, bad weather, boat still in dry dock, our chances to board the good ship Glywyn did not arise.
Carpe Diem Matey! Unfurl the sails. Grab the jib, raise the mast and steer the rudder, it was time to set sail for an hour long excursion around the Riverton Yacht Club, zigzagging the river along the Riverton, NJ side - beautiful, well-kept Manor Homes and lush green lawns;

And on the the Philadelphia/Tacony, PA side of the Delaware River - an abandoned industrial wasteland, views of congested I95 North and an old shipping warehouse being stripped of it's aluminium siding slowly and steadily each day.

Let it be known to all land lubbers - sailing is hard work. Roger was constantly on the move, tying lines, moving the sail masts from starboard to port, steering the rudder astern or ahead and always keeping a watchful eye to the water and weather vein to see from which direction the wind was blowing, lest we crash into rocks or other boats in our path.
Oh, he was in his glory, eyes full of light and glee, scrambling along the deck and prow of the boat keeping the boat steady. Even though were were going 5-7 miles an hour, on the water that can feel like a ride on a roller coaster going 60 miles up and down. Roger he kept us on smooth waters despite the occasional chop or wake from ski jets and speed boats whizzing by. His three maidens, first mate and wife Astrid, land lubbers Liz and I were cradled in our seats, contentedly lulled by the mostly gentle rocking of the boat.
After our tour, Roger took us back to the dock and we walked the short distance to their house while he packed up the sails and closed up the boat for the night. Watching him open the boat and unfurl the sails, climb down to his living quarters and bring up the pillows, anchor bob-flag and other assorted sailing necessities was like watching a kid readying his club house for an "Our Gang" meeting. Captain Roger and his floating club house - no girls allowed, except that he had only girls aboard!

Around 6 pm we headed back to their house for a swim in the pool. And yes, it gets better! They treated us to sailing and swimming and then a the perfect summer meal - Lobsters and Fresh Corn! It was like going to New England without the long drive and wickedly funny accents!

Sunday - Can it really be Mid-August in Philadelphia? It's not humid and 90 degrees. We have clear skies. It's a dream. But boy, is summer flying by too fast. I can just start to feel Fall creeping around the corner. A cooler breeze, a few leaves beginning to turn prematurely red and brown. I'm not ready for the summer to end just yet. Ah well, we did enjoy the day nevertheless. More great food and company, this time with Liz's family, her dad and his wife, Liz's sister, and Liz's grandmother, who is 88 and in fantastic shape and spirits. What a grounding and connecting day and weekend this was, reminding me how lucky I am and how wonderful it can be to visit with people you love. Good friends, good food and good times. I can't ask for much more.

Monday, August 11, 2008

3 Crashes & Another Road Rash Badge of Honor

I have now fallen off of my bike three times, bruising and gashing both knees and my left elbow. They say, "they" being my fellow bicycle friends and acquaintances, that you tend to have to fall three times out of your clips before you get proficient at mastering the art of toe clips and cleats. I can only hope. I am not happy with the scabs and scars I am building on my legs and arms. My elbow has a cut and a small marble sized welt along the bone area where I tend to lean my arm when I type. Not comfortable. Today's latest crash came at a similar point to my first crash - as I was stopping to end a ride. This time I wasn't paying enough attention to the road at the end of the Schuylkill River Trail and I wiped out on the large patch of big rocks that meets up to the trail and the railroad tracks. Luckily I fell on my side and ample derriere. I wasn't hurt as badly as in my other falls and no gear, gadgets or body parts appear to be broken, other than the aforementioned cuts and scrapes. Now if I were a mountain biker or BMX racer, I'd expect to have a lot body damage. However, I am a 41 year old woman, a triathlete for goodness sake! I think I should be over the stage of skinned knees and boo boos on my legs. Yeesh!
The odd thing about this third fall is that they definitely happen just as I, a)begin to feel a bit cocky on the bike because I get to thinking I can go just a bit further and faster, and b) I start to lose my attention and don't focus on the road conditions or what the heck is right in front of me. I have been contemplating giving up the clips and go back over to toe straps but my ego isn't quite bruised enough to make the change. After tonight's spectacular fall, I could be convinced that it is in my best interest to keep my legs and arms sexy and not add on any more gashes and wounds. I never did go in for wearing dresses and skirts; now I practically can't wear them, I'd look like the epitome of a Tomboy in her big sister's frock. Yuck!

Monday, August 4, 2008


2:27:58: It's not a biblical passage, it's my race time from Sunday's She Rox Triathlon. I am still so elated! I think another rush of adrenaline has started coursing through my body since I saw my actual results in live numbers. There are so many aspects to the day that are overwhelming to me, it's hard to put all my thoughts together to create a complete picture. These are a few words that touch on the feelings I've been having from 6:30 am Sunday morning until now:

  • Pride
  • Awe
  • Elation
  • Wonderment
  • Profound sense of accomplishment
  • Happiness
  • Relief
  • Determination
Prologue - Starting the Day: I left my house around 6:30 am and rode 5 miles up to the event. As I approached the She Rox start, I was struck by the magnitude of day. I wasn't there to be a spectator, watching the Philadelphia and CGI Triathlons, I was there as a participant. I felt my first wave of tears and emotions. At 7 am there were over 1,000 women cuing up to be body marked and make their way into the transition area. We stowed our gear and some women took a warm up swim in the river. I looked around for friends and found a bunch of my buddies. Time felt like it had slowed down and sped up in the same instant, like I was in slow motion but everything around me was moving at warp speed. One minute a bunch of us are at the bathrooms and then we're standing in our age group waves waiting for our turn to take to the river for the swim. Over the loud speakers a woman is singing The National Anthem. It is still and silent and all of the women are sharing this single moment as one before we enter the race.

Part 1 - The Swim: The swim waves begin at 8 am. My group in purple swim caps, the 40 to 42 category, hits the water at 8:28 am. The river isn't scary but the swim is daunting. I couldn't get a good breath and I felt like I forgot every swim stroke I ever learned. I mange to doggie paddle, breast stroke and get on my back to butterfly stroke the entire 1/2 mile. I didn't stop, I did not have to hold onto the life guard rafts and I finished the swim in 34 minutes. Which for me, was amazing. I thought I would be in the water for 45 minutes, especially at the rate I was going. As you are about to finish swimming, the volunteers on the "beach" help you out of the water, pulling you to the safety of the shore. Ascending the beach head, I yelled out to the crowd "I survived the Schuylkill!" and I raced up to the transition area to throw on my biking gear and run my bike out to the bike start.

Part 2 - The bike race: This is where I feel in my element. I definitely had moments where I thought I was biking great and then I would be freaking out in my head thinking that I sucked at this and that I could never ride in a race again. As bad as I thought the swim portion was and that I was relieved it was over, I had similar thoughts about the bike race. Again, breathing was hard due to my nerves. The first 5 miles were difficult but then I started to feel in control. I took the hills with good speed thanks to the lighter bike and the descents were fantastically swift, almost reaching 30 miles an hour! After the first loop, my logeyness subsided, my breathing became more relaxed and I felt great. I could hear Liz and our friend, Ben, cheering me on as I came around the first lap. On the second lap I went much faster, took the hills with greater ease and really felt myself sprinting with confidence. As I finished the bike loops and ran my bike into the transition area, I was really charged up and ran quickly. Liz took some photos of me at the bike transition area - and I remember yelling out - "I feel like I'm gonna collapse!" Instead, I put on my sneakers, grabbed my visor and ran out to the run area.

Part 3 - The Run: Running on asphalt, in the sun is hard because I've only run on a treadmill. As I told myself during the swim, it was about finishing, and then during the bike, it's not a race against anyone else except myself, I gave myself permission to walk the run portion if I needed. Power walk, speed walk, light jog, I did it all, in 39 minutes. During the run, you can "see" and really get a sense of what's going on. In the river, it's about moving forward and staying afloat. Biking, moving forward and getting that portion completed. The run - you are almost done and now you are powering yourself with just your body, not the water's current and/or a wet suit, and not on two wheels, but rather on just your legs with no machinery or gadgets. I could talk to other women and share encouragements. At the end as I neared the finish I knew I wanted to finish with a final run. I had saved enough energy to make the last moment really count. And as though some higher power took over my body and lifted me to the finish line, I sprinted, powering my legs with a swiftness I didn't know I had within myself. Cue the tears - 'cause the waterworks were on full force.

Epilogue - The Post Race High: Liz and Ben found me right away, all of us in tears together. We hung out for a while, meeting up with some of my tri-buddies, my mentor, Sue, and friends Veronica and Jason. After wandering a bit and gathering up my gear, Liz and I stayed for the awards ceremony. I am so glad I did. I got to see the tri leaders win their awards and hear some great inspirational stories. The best part of the day was watching and cheering for the woman who was the final racer to complete the tri. The She Rox Coordinators ran out with her as she was finishing and brought her in and up to the awards podium. The crowd was cheering and clapping for her. She didn't give up - she made it to the end and everyone was so proud of her accomplishment. She wasn't in last place, she was the final finisher, the woman who closed the race. To say she was in last place negates her achievement and what she and all the participants accomplished was mighty. She is among the many women I saw who made me feel happy to be a part of the event. There were all kinds of women out there on Sunday, many of whom were first time participants. There were all kinds of body types and abilities. There were all kinds of bikes. I learned an enormous lesson on Sunday, that I need to unlearn judgement. It does not matter what a person "looks like" or what age she is. I saw a women who was 73, and I just bet she did a fantastic job. Ability and determination does not know color, body type, social class or age. If you think you can do it and you practice and train, you can do it. You just have to try. I am humbled by the power of determination. I completed a triathlon and I am going to do it again next year. I am a determined woman.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

She Rox Tri - Sprinting to the Finish Line

I am in a word, elated. Surprisingly, I am not exhausted. I think I still have so much adrenaline pumping through me that I'm really keyed up from the whole incredibly emotional day that was the She Rox Triathlon. I finished in under 3 hours. I swam slowly, not well, in the Schuylkill River; biked fast for the 15 mile ride; as for the run, I power walked most of it, with occasional jog and run bursts, until the last few yards when something kicked in and I sprinted to the finish line. Liz took this video as I am finishing. It totally encapsulates the whole experience and my elation and emotional joy as I crossed the finish line. When I can put my thoughts together in a more cognitive fashion, I will write more about the experience. I'm so happy I did this event, that I finished it, and that I want to do it again next year! As corny as the slogans are, I totally agree - She Swims, She Bikes, She Runs - SHE ROX! Enjoy the video while I go and collapse!


Friday, August 1, 2008

Tri-ing to get everything all in a row

Photos - 3rd & Market Streets - Christ's Church Fence being used as a bike lock rack. First Friday - August 1, 2008
It's countdown time now for the She Rox Triathlon. T3 minus 1 and counting! I'm not so sure if I'm nervous or in denial. I think I'm ready, though I won't know for sure until after I get out of the Schuylkill River and then get on my bike. It's making it up the river and under the Columbia Avenue Bridge and back down the river that is worrying me most. I should and could be worried about the run, but once I'm on land, I can walk, run, power walk and hobble if I need. What I'm doing now, aside from wasting precious sleep hours, is carb loading! Yeah! I can eat bread, and pasta, and potatoes, all at once! And I've had ice cream. Creamy, rich, delicious ice cream from the Franklin Fountain at 2nd and Market Street. Peach and Blueberry. And I don't feel a bit guilty. Besides, we walked from 5th and Race, through Olde City and First Friday, and then all the way home from 2nd and Market to our humble South Philly home deep in the heart of South 8th Street. I should sign up for more athletic events, if I get to eat such serious carbs like this and lose weight, it's worth the physical efforts. YEAH RIGHT!
So, as I count down the hours until I take to the water at 8:28 am on Sunday, I am visualizing myself doing well, swimming efficiently, biking easily and fast, and running, fleet of foot, like a modern day Lady Mercury or Teleflora runner. I send out many thanks to all of you who have been following my progress and sending me good wishes. If you are in Philly, come on out to have a look see - West River Drive, at the Disabled Rower's Boat House, between Sweet Briar and Black Roads, halfway between the Water falls near boat house row and the East Falls Bridge. For directions, click here. Hope to see folks on Sunday after the race. Photos and feelings to follow!