Not Cold? My Ears are Frozen!

Last weekend we shared a lazy Sunday brunch with our neighbors (yes, the same one who borrowed Voltes V). They have just moved from Minnesota to Iowa last summer, and as good neighbors we befriended them. They did fit in quickly to our neighborhood, and have settled in pretty much in their lovely new home.

Trying to know people with very different background than us is always interesting. They were curious how we who grew up in another country ended up here in Iowa. We told them of our experiences and what it was like back home. We were happy to inform them that the Philippines have more than 7100 islands (and that some of them disappear during high tide), and that our country’s land area is only twice as big as Iowa, but our population is about 92 M, compared to 3 M here in Iowa.

Then we talked about the Philippines’ climate where the temperature varies between 70’s to 90’s F all year through, unlike the very wide range of -20 (below 0) to 100 F here in Iowa.

As we were sharing stories, they told us that their friends have called them earlier that day and told them that they should be thankful, for there was so much snow and it was so much colder there in St.Paul/Minneapolis (Twin Cities) where they use to lived, than what we were experiencing here in Des Moines.

This couple grew up in Minnesota and spent most of their lives there, and they are very accustomed to cold. They claimed that in Minnesota, they can have up to 6 months of snow in a year. (Half a year of snow?!!) They have learned to embrace the cold weather and enjoy activities in snow. To them, Iowa winter is considered mild. (What do you mean not cold? My ears are already frozen!)

I find it funny that we have such different perspective of what cold is. I guess, to each his own.

Should I be thankful then, for it is warmer here than in Minnesota? I went out and checked the temperature outside: 8 F. Yeah, right.

Superman Visits Des Moines

In the 707th issue of Superman comic-book series that came out in stores yesterday, it showed Superman visiting the city of Des Moines. He did his usual hero stuff here, like stopping a freight train from running over a girl, rescuing a crashing helicopter, and foiling a robbery. No, I don’t have the comic-book, I just heard it from the Iowa Public Radio which I listened to, when I am driving to work. I then read it more in the Des Moines Register (our city’s newspaper, counterpart of the fictional Daily Planet where Clark Kent works) on-line edition.

According to the story, Superman, has been walking, (mind you, not flying) across America to get back in touch with humanity. Even though I don’t follow comic books (except for Calvin and Hobbes!), I am a Superman fan, and maybe I will get a copy of this most recent issue, just for curiosity sake.

That's the Principal Building in Des Moines (image from Des Moines Register)

Des Moines is far different from Metropolis, the fictional city where Clark Kent lives. For one, Des Moines is relatively small compared to the mega city of Metropolis. We also don’t have crazy characters, like the mad scientist, Lex Luthor, who wants to rule over the world. There might be some mad doctors though (No, it’s not me!). And it does not mean, we have no use of another caped hero.

I am not sure why Superman did not stay for long in Des Moines though. Perhaps he found out that we have traces of kryptonite in our water. Or maybe Lois Lane does not want to move to Des Moines. Or maybe he just cannot find a telephone booth where he can change into his tights. But then again, what other cities still have telephone booths?

21K in 2M

I am planning to participate again in the Des Moines half marathon (21 kilometers) this October. I confess, I have been slacking on my running (I always find reasons not too: it’s too cold, it’s too hot, I’m too tired, I’m too busy, I’m too lazy……). For the past 10 months, the longest I have run is 5K (and that’s far in between in occasion). Well, I have 2 more months to prepare for this.

Time to put on Hermes’ shoes of speed, Rocky’s unfading endurance, and my own iron determination. For a start, I ran 10K yesterday. Just don’t ask me how long it took me. Let’s just say I started when the sun was just rising, and finished before the sun sets.

Now I am aching for a foot massage.

Des Moines Marathon