What an incredible day. I have never seen so many perfectly sculpted bodies at the same time. Ironman-fever has gripped Kona and it is contagious.
Today I met our DuVine guides Jen and Justin along with my tour-buddies; Nan, Charlie, Julie and Scott. Jen and Justin are both a joy to be around. Young, energetic, knowledgeable, enthusiastic and fun. Our day started with a trip to the Halualoa Coffee Company where they grow and roast organic coffee. After learning a bit about the process, sipping coffee and getting to know everyone, the highlight was Jen serving a papaya Hawaiian-style with a dash of lime juice. Thank you Jen; quite delicious!
By around noon, we were at the Cannondale booth where we met Heather Jackson. For being a world-class triathlete, she is very down-to-earth and fun. I’m not a big tattoo fan, but her left arm is a work of art. We bombarded her with questions about her training schedule, her upcoming races, her motivations, etc. etc. and she answered them all with calm and poise. She’s a Princeton grad – what do you expect? We set out for an hour-long run (about 7 miles) along Ali’i drive. With tons of triathletes running and biking past us, the atmosphere was electrifying. I was struggling the last 15 minutes, but it is an hour I will remember and cherish for a long time. You can see from the picture below that I was having fun as Heather was looking back at me. On the way, we even saw some parakeets flying about!
After the run, Heather hung out with us casually for another hour as I got fit with a Cannondale SuperSix (unfortunately with Shimano 105 components).
We ended the day with a scrumptious dinner at Haluakoa Cafe and Gardens. Tomorrow, we go swimming in the ocean and kayak with the dolphins! I love Hawaii…