Introducing Clarabella runs Europe, the natural solution for any millennial trying to avoid a break-up induced quarter-life crisis. At Christmas I decided that starting in March I would run a half marathon a month, in a different location in Europe, for a whole year. Today is the 1st of March and I am happy to report that mission one is accomplished and my challenge is well and truly under way.
Location #1 was Paris. Given that Paris and I have previous (if you haven't read Diaries of a Parisian office worker and fancy a good laugh you can find them here Diaries of a Parisian Office Worker), I should have known it wasn't going to be plain sailing. It went something like this:
Me (stuffing my face with crepes and ice cream because, carb-loading): "It's so nice to be back in Paris, I was always so negative when I lived here but actually I was wrong"
Yes that's right, our favourite trending topic made it all the way to Paris just in time to cancel an event to be attended by 44,000 runners, most of whom were already in the city and already busy spreading whatever germs they might have had. But the French government made their decision and given that we may be facing a global pandemic I suppose you might be able to understand their position (but also maybe you should have also cancelled the Ligue 1 football games, eh Macron? I know some people dislike them but football fans' lives are important too). At this point Beth and I looked something like this:
"What should we do?" we asked ourselves, over and over and over for about 3 hours. In the end there were two clear options: a) just forget about it and get sloshed on cheap French wine over dinner or b) run our own race anyway and stick two fingers to the French government and their health and safety policy. I think you know which one we chose.
Fast forward to 8.45 this morning and I'm working my way through a pre-run breakfast of apple purée (baby food but delicious nonetheless), a banana, a mars bar and a creme egg. Nutritious it may not be but let me tell you it did the trick because this girl ran a PB!! A lot of other would-be half marathoners had the same idea and the banks of the Seine were awash with the sweet sight of runners this morning. I even think I enjoyed it more because I got to make my own route and didn't have any of the pre-race nerves I was dreading so much! Clare 1: Coronavirus 0 (for now - I might have contracted it at some point over the weekend).
The only disappointment is that I didn't get my medal (I was planning to wear it around my neck on the train home so people knew I was kind of a big deal). Next stop: home, just in time for my birthday tomorrow 😁
NB: No passports were harmed in the running of this race.