Monday, March 24, 2014

Finally checked out Phoenix Municipal Stadium

Better late than never. I finally went to a spring-training game at Phoenix Muni. I've now been to all Valley ballparks except the new Cubs stadium in Mesa. (But I'll wait on that one until next year.)

Chicago Cubs vs. Oakland A's

I really liked being able to see the Papago Buttes from our seats.

Next year the Oakland Athletics are moving to Hohokam Stadium in Mesa. ASU is taking over Muni, which should be good for the school's baseball program. (And for me, because it'll be closer to my house than Tempe.)

If I had visited Muni before this year I'm not sure how often I'd return. Here's why:

  • Food options were limited. I saw nachos, peanuts, hot dogs and pizza, among other options, but no garlic fries(!) or non-traditional offerings like some of the other stadiums. 
  • Few registers accepted credit cards. And the line I was in was so long that I missed two innings buying nachos.
  • Parking was $5. Free is better.
But those views sure are nice.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Matt's Big Breakfast: Finally Tried It!

I've heard the raves, and now I understand. I tried Matt's Big Breakfast for Sunday brunch recently. I can't wait to go back!

So what did I order?

I tried a cheese omelet with roasted red peppers and wheat toast with their delicious jam. Yum!

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Spring training 2014: Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Diego Padres at Camelback Ranch Glendale

My first spring training game of the year was the day after the rainstorm that broke the 70-day dry spell. The clouds made for lovely views over the field.

I sat next to enthusiastic Dodgers fans who came from LA for just one day to watch this game. They were thrilled to see their favorite players.

Tommy Lasorda watches the game.
 As the end of the game neared, the clouds rolled in.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Phoenix Half Marathon 2014

My alarm went off at 3 a.m. today for the Phoenix Half Marathon in Mesa. It felt like Ragnar Del Sol all over again. I had to leave my house at 4 in order to get to Mesa Riverview in time to catch a shuttle to the start line. I got to the start line before 5 a.m., so that left me with an hour and a half to sit and wait next to a heater. I used the time as an opportunity to people-watch and hydrate. As 6 a.m. neared the wind picked up and I felt sprinkles of rain. I regretted wearing a tank and not bringing a jacket to toss or wrap around my waist. I prayed the rain would let up before the race, but it continued through our start time and for at least the first mile. The water on my face made it impossible to see, but I just kept moving. Before long the rain stopped and I continued on the 13.1 mile journey back to Mesa Riverview. I tried to keep a pace of 9:30, which is faster than the first half I did, in 2012. I felt great until Mile 7, when I started to lose motivation. Luckily Beyonce's "Run the World (Girls)" inspired me to keep going. The people cheering for us also helped a lot, especially those who tried to make me laugh. From Mile 10-13.1 I struggled to keep my pace and energy. I powered through it for a strong finish, which for me is around 2 hours and 8 minutes (unofficial). Now I look forward to hopefully getting to a 2-hour half later this year!