Kona Arrival

Ahhhhh Kona. There is something special about arriving in Kona. You disembark the plane using an old-fashioned ladder; walk into the humid air on the tarmac into an open-air terminal. Almost half the passengers are greeted by family and friends by garlanding leis around their necks. Your body, mind, soul relaxes. The pace of life slows down and with it, your heartbeat.

It seemed like half the airplane was full of Ironmen and Ironwomen. I counted at least 5 languages (mostly European sounding); they have come from all over. The backpacks had the familiar Ironman logos; some red and some green.

My hotel room is nothing special. It overlooks a parking lot where a few hardy souls are setting up a stage. In the faint light, I see hundreds of white chairs all stacked neatly in front of the stage. That pic is the best my iPhone can do with low light. I wonder if the setup is for the awards ceremony or for the pre-race meetings or something completely unrelated to the Ironman.

I can’t wait until tomorrow. I will meet my group, my guides and we will head out to a coffee plantation. This will be followed by a meeting with Cannondale for my bike; and then a run with Heather Jackson.

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