Wednesday, April 25, 2012

St. Augustine

I spent a chunk of last week, last weekend, and this week in St. Augustine, FL. If you are going to be stuck in Florida (not my favorite place to be by a long shot), St. Augustine might be the best place to be. It is the oldest city in North America, and has a unique feel - something like New Orleans meets Cape Cod.

The first few days in the city, I didn't run, but instead swam in the hotel's pool. The last couple of days, we (my friend Marisa and I) switched to a hotel on the water, and I got to run along a beach that was tens of miles long. The beach had almost no people on it at any time. It was great to set out and just keep going. I wore my new Merrell Barefoot shoes. They held up nicely. Other than the Nike Free disaster of a few years ago, I have never worn minimalist shoes on runs. But I figured the sand would save me, and it did.
Marisa on Jacksonville Beach, where we stopped on our way to the airport 

The high point of our stay on the beach was spotting a group of dolphins just offshore. They were swimming along at sunset. We walked up the beach with them for a short time until they finally disappeared. Since we were there on business, we did do quite a bit of work making sure our stores attending the trade show knew about our products. Being part of the natural products industry, we did run into several companies that offered great new products. Chicago Vegan Foods, for example, has stunning cheeses that we sampled. A Spanish company offering a range of teas called Help was also interesting. We hit most of the vegan restaurants in St. Augustine. We also visited the lighthouse on the island, the art district, and the gorgeous Flagler College (that is one nice place to go to school). While I did miss out on a lot of wonderful running in Kansas over the past weekend, at least I did it in a pretty idyllic spot.

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