Ayutthaya 10K

22 Dec

Last weekend, several of the members of our little running posse went up to Ayutthaya to participate in another set of races. I’ve been enjoying these organized races, and plan to do a few others over the course of the year. At the moment, I’m just in it for the snazzy t-shirts, but I may one day muster up the energy to run a half-marathon. We shall see.

Our race began with a bit of an adventure, as a few of us took the train up from Bangkok. More specifically, we took the third-class train, at the amazing price of 15 baht (about 50 cents). The third-class trains have ceiling fans and open windows rather than air con, and stop a zillion times. The journey to Ayutthaya is about an hour by car, or an hour by taxi to the train station, a two hour train ride, and a short tuk tuk to the hotel. Adventure! Traveling by train was interesting; the area around Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok is… I don’t know what word to choose. The tracks leaving the station are surrounded by slums: entire neighborhoods filled with tiny little houses constructed of corrugated metal sheets, but most of them have huge, red satellite dishes on their roofs. Oddly enough, it reminded me of Vermont, where one sees tiny mobile homes with a satellite dish and an expensive snowmobile parked out front. Outside of Bangkok, the view turns to rice paddies and fields of unidentified greens. A steady stream of people boarded and left the train, including monks, ladies selling fruit, and families with adorable munchkins.

The race itself was delightful. With a start time of 6:00am, we began running in the dark and ran into the sunrise. The weather in Thailand has been cooler than usual as of late, so running was shockingly pleasant. The course wound around several of the main temples in Ayutthaya, providing delightful scenery for the run. I tried to snap several photos with the iPhone, with varying degrees of success.  After the race, the bunch of us had some fun sharing a celebratory breakfast, and playing tourist around some of the temples. I didn’t take many photos since Ayutthaya had already been thoroughly photographed by yours truly during our last visit – if you’re interested in those, click here. Check out the pics below for some shots of our run!

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