Here I am in Leiden, about to run my half marathon in the morning. I'm still not quite sure how this came to pass (apart from the madness of signing up to do a half in the first place) because evidently I have a talent for attracting some sort of perfect storm for logistical chaos.
Plan 1: I'd go to Leiden and stay with friends, maybe Mike and Sophie would join me.
Circumstance 1: Friends' kid turning 3 on Saturday.
Plan 2: We'd all go to Leiden for the weekend in time for the birthday party, maybe have an extra day in total.
Circumstance 2: I need to schedule one last work trip to Leuven.
Plan 3: We'd all go to Leiden, Mike & Sophie would return Monday and I'd follow Wednesday after a quick detour to Leuven.
Circumstance 3: We have visitors from Tuesday to Friday before the trip.
Plan 4: We will all (visitors included) fly out on the same flight to Amsterdam on Friday, they'd return home and we'd get to Leiden.
Circumstance 4: Mike's grandmother dies, funeral scheduled for Wednesday after the marathon.
Plan 5: We depart as scheduled, throw away the return leg of our tickets, Mike & Sophie fly AMS -> LHR Monday, I take Eurostar from Brussels Tuesday evening after my now-shortened trip to Leuven, we attend funeral and fly back Thursday.
Circumstance 5: Sophie has really nasty nappy rash (bleeding and everything), needed to see a doctor this past Wednesday, we were told to return on Friday if it wasn't better (but wait, flying to Amsterdam Friday!)
Plan 6: Same as above, only we make frantic request of our friends in Leiden to get us an appointment with their kid's doctor to get another opinion on the rash, which was indeed not better by Thursday evening.
Circumstance 6: My boss in Leuven won't be around Monday, or Tuesday morning, so I won't see her. Also in the general heightened chaos I was a dumbass and left my keyring at home, meaning I can't even give back my office keys which was part of the point of the trip.
Plan 7: Forget Leuven, it's not worth the night's hotel cost. But my Eurostar ticket is non-refundable. So I'll stick to my travel plans but spend Monday night also in Leiden going to the library or visiting the spa or something.
Circumstance 7: [ watch this space ]
Intentions: When I went out on Wednesday for my last training run I thought rather optimistically that I might, after arrival in Leiden, go out for an easy little leg-stretcher.
Reality: Yesterday started at 4:45am in order to catch the flight, involved all the walking in the world through Schiphol, wrestling a tired toddler through multiple nappy changes that are painful and scary for her at the moment, walking all over Leiden with kid in tow to get from appointment to appointment, trying to comfort screaming toddler through yet another examination of her ass, getting to the house of friends where we finally decided to force a nap on her and she took a full 40 minutes to finally, blissfully, mercifully, fall asleep. Then when she woke up it was dinnertime so we went to a Greek restaurant where the food was great when it eventually arrived, but the arrival took, oh, 90 minutes? You know, to the table with the TODDLER? It was a major miracle that she did not spend the last two hours screaming and I don't know how she did it because I sure would have liked to. We got her to bed at 10pm instead of her usual time of 7 and it still took me an hour to unwind enough to fall asleep. So yeah, no run.
Today we mostly hung out with friends attending the aforementioned birthday party, then went to get our race numbers, and I had a nice big steak for dinner. At 8pm I felt like it must be time to go to sleep already. At least I didn't walk 20000 steps like the Fitbit says I did yesterday (does that count as a leg stretcher after all?)
Am I really running a half marathon tomorrow? The whole thing seems so far away...