Friday, December 7, 2012

How do you say "there's a giant tarantula" in spanish?

Caroline and I have been trying to stick to a running schedule, since we are training for the Tel Aviv Half Marathon in March. It will be my first half marathon, and obviously Caroline has run that distance plenty of times, both while training for the Boston Marathon and in a couple half-marathon events.

We have found a few good running routes around our apartment, mostly through the parks that form a chain through the city center. This is nice for our typical runs, around 3-4 miles. However, once a week we are supposed to do a longer run that slowly builds up in distance until we get to the 13.1 required for a half marathon.

For the longer runs, we try to run somewhere more interesting. A great run nearby is up Cerro San Cristóbal, a hill that is central in Santiago and overlooks the city. It is topped with a statue of the Virgin Mary, of course. It's part of a very large park; in fact I've been told that it is the largest urban park by area anywhere in the world! Quite a claim! (though not quite as grand as being the third largest city in California by land area)

It's a tough run uphill, but earns you a great view and some macho pride for doing something tough. Part way up, we saw a troupe of girl scouts coming down the road, and some of them seemed to be freaking out a bit. Well, as we got closer, we saw there was a real-life giant tarantula crossing the road. The thing was about the size of my palm. I'm sure many of you know how I feel about spiders, but it was a cool thing to see so long as I kept my distance :)

One of the girl scout troupe leaders was very brave, and tried to shoo the tarantula off the road so it wouldn't get run over. She sort of nudged the thing with her foot...I was impressed. We stopped long enough to take a picture, and then continued our run.

What's the weirdest thing you've ever encountered while running?


  1. There is a house on Prytania Street that often has an emu and some chickens in the front yard. I've stopped to take their picture a few times.

  2. Wow, that might actually top a tarantula. Who keeps an emu?

  3. In the city no less! It seems to me that they are rich people who possibly are into urban farming. It's certainly odd but much less creepy than a giant tarantula.