Aug. 21, 2005

Istanbul (not Constantinople)

Yeah, yeah, the same place. Also home for the first time to a Formula One race. The Turks have build an excellent race track on the outskirts of Istanbul and today was the first Formula One race there. I watched the race on tape with my friend Brian over a dinner of his barbecued chicken and my famous chickpea salad.

My favourite driver Kimi Raikkonen was on the pole followed by the Renaults of Fernando Alonso and Giancarlo Fisichella and then Kimi's team-mate Juan Pablo Montoya. The other teams were there but not really in the running although Jenson Button made a determined charge in his BAR. It was an entertaining race, with lots of opportunities to pass. The first lap was particularly active with Kimi losing his lead and then regaining it. He was never under pressure after that, but there was plenty of action behind him. Michael Schumacher had a good run until he made a mistake blocking a passing maneuver by Mark Webber. They both recovered, but Michael's car was too damaged for him to be competitive. At the end of the race Montoya got tangled up with Tiago Monteiro while lapping him. He spun but managed to retain his second place position until turn 8, when damage to his aerodynamic bits left him with too little grip to hold his intended line. That allowed Fernando Alonso to catch him and then pass him. An unfortunate end to a good race for Montoya.

Today was also the first family celebration of the wedding I attended on Friday. This gathering was largely for the groom's family, and was held at the top of the Sheraton Centre. Chris had a great time at the buffet table and talking to the bride's four year-old son, and we finally got a chance to have a slice of the cake Sheryl had made and taken to Langdon Hall and back. Each rose was hand-made from icing! Delicious. Click on the picture for a larger, mouth-watering, view. It took her about a week of work and she must have had some nervous moments transporting it through the storm.

Last Thursday Chris and I decided to see a movie. He wanted to see The Wedding Crashers, I convinced him to come to March of the Penguins. I have to admit it was pretty slow-paced, but what a beautifully filmed and narrated experience! Emperor Penguins, it seems, do everything the hard way. Recommended.

Some more triathlon notes: I forgot to tie up my cycling shoes, but it didn't seem to make any difference. I also never started my chronometer. Maybe I won't bother with it next time. During the final part of the cycling leg of the triathlon I turned onto the main road and found myself surrounded by cyclists. Where did they come from? I was passing them easily enough though and was wondering why they were all riding so close together. They started yelling at me to pass on the left, but there was no room on that side so I shrugged and continued onward. We all realised at the same time what was going on. I had raced into the middle of a "peloton" of road cyclists out for a training ride on the same stretch of road as my race! They switched to shouts of encouragement and I saluted as I raced off ahead.

Listening to: Istanbul (Not Constantinople) by They Might Be Giants from Flood.

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