My last week in Texas was bound to be an exciting one with the Austin Super/Sprint weekend, and it didn’t disappoint.
I said bye to Eric in Dallas and flew to Austin to stay with Brandon and Reignbeaux in Austin for the Spartan weekend.
Wednesday was spent in Burnet helping set up for the weekend’s Spartan Race. It was raining in the morning and I told one of the staff members that I didn’t have a rain jacket. She went to check if there were any ponchos available and returned with a yellow rain jacket.
The rain jacket belonged to the race director. After he heard that there was an Australian needing a rain jacket he gave up his and drew on it. He added an extra star to the Southern Cross (apparently because I’m a star) and may have misspelt ‘oi oi oi’ but I appreciated the effort. I had to laugh and wore it with pride until the sun came out and the weather turned from freezing cold to nice and warm.
The rest of the week was just spent planning more travel before the race weekend.
In the months before I arrived I had so many people ask me why I was going to Texas of all places. I often responded that it was just to do some races, but it ended up being so much more than that.
Texas is the home of the Lone Star Spartans, an OCR obsessed group of people. I was added to the group by my friend Mimi and I signed up to run with their team at the events. I knew that if they were anything like the Weeples that I would be treated like an old friend, and they didn’t disappoint.
I had people coming up to me and giving me massive hugs when they realised I was ‘The Aussie’, and I could always count on the LSS folks to cheer me on as I ran past. I can’t remember how many times I heard “Hey, it’s the Aussie!” out on course but I’ve never been recognised that many times before. The lovely Kimberly even started a hashtag – #ivegottheAussie.
Despite only knowing the LSS folks for only a few weeks, it feels like I have known them forever. The Lone Star Spartans are an incredible bunch of people, and I am honoured to have been able to get to know them and run with them so many times in the last few weeks. A few tears were shed when I said goodbye, but I’m planning on coming back in September for more muddy Texas fun.
During the trip I was lucky enough to be adopted by three amazing people – Kendal in San Antonio, Eric in Dallas, and Brandon in Austin – who all took me in with open arms and treated me like I was part of their family. They made me feel like I was at home and I cannot thank them all enough for all they did for me.
It’s true what people say about the Southern hospitality, and the amazing people I have met over the last few weeks are testament to that. I’ll see y’all in September! 😉
Week 8: 18 – 24 April