Richard Doron Johnson

October 31, 2006

8 Mile

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 4:03 am

Have you ever heard of Marshall Mathers or Eminem? Well most of the Hip Hop community has because of his music and his movie “8 Mile.” Well, while I was in Detroit today I stumbbled upon this infamous road and had to get a few photos for all those who have watched the movie and wonder is it really 8 miles long. Honestly I am not sure and I thought about running it to make sure but after having just run a marathon I figured I might need to take some time off from the running!

Today was spent mostly running, I mean driving around seeing what I missed during the marathon or what I happened to see during it. Below are a few sites of this motorized city.
The GM Headquarters. Also in Tower 300 level 1 all the way in the back is where I got my Potbelly’s Smoothie and Cookie from!
 

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The Motor City!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 3:50 am

The Detroit Marathon was huge success. I was not sure how things were going to turn out with the weather prediction being pretty cold, rainy and snowy for about a week. But it cleared up and the sun came out early that morning. The starting temperature at 7:15am was 38 degrees but fortunately with the correct gear and training everything ended up being warm and fine.

My main purpose for running this race was to pace Adrienne Wilson to make sure she did not pass out during her first marathon. She did a great job running a 4:34hr marathon running off as little training as you can possibly do to complete the distance. For any of you who do not know what it takes to run a marathon let me be the first to tell you that it takes dedication to run a decent time. Many of my friends thought I was a bit crazy for doing 2, 26.2 mile races in one month but I knew I could handle it as long as I was not running under 4 hours for the whole thing. I just tought of it as a nice easy long run to get use to the distance.

I think the Detroit marathon is a great course that has a lot of similarites to the New York Marathon. First you have the “Ambassader Bridge” which is just like the Verrazano bridge in New York.

Then you have a long passage in Assumption, Canada where it is just flat and very scenic. Looks like Detroit across the water.

What is nice about Detroit though is you get to go through the underwater tunnel which is a mile long.
This is me in Canada with Detroit in the background! Yes, I have on my “Stunner Glasses”!
After this (mile 9) it is pretty much all flat or down hill slightly. The only thing they need to improve on is some of the streets are a bit rough and you can injure yourself if your not careful around mile 14 and 19. Other than that this race is growing really fast to the point where the half marathon sold out and the full-marathon was pretty close to it. I enjoyed finishing at the 50 yard line of the Ford Field stadium too. When you enter the arena you have no choice but to feel like a super star no matter how long it took you to run the distance.

Would I do this course again, sure! But there are so many other ones to run that I have not done that are supposed to be great like Philadelphia, Myrtle Beach, or L.A. that I will stick to experiancing different parts of the country while running or at least until someone pays me a pile of money to run their 26.2 mile race. Good luck to all you New York Marathon runners next week. I am screaming enternally for all my homeys and hometts out their leaving it all on the course!

October 29, 2006

On Your Marks Get Set Go!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 1:07 am

1. Woke up at 3:50am (did I really sleep?)
2. Packed up and drove to the Vegas airport at 4:30am
3. Got on a 6am flight to Denver,Co and slept the whole way!
4. 10am got on another flight going to Detroit!
5. Sat on the runway for an hour due to bad weather in Detroit!
6. 11am the Flight took off and had some ugly turbulance due to really bad winds in Detroit!
7. 1pm I remembered why I like being on the ground!
8. 2pm Flight landed and I got off as soon as possible.
9. 4pm Rented a car and drove to the Detroit Marathon Expo arriving just in time for more madness with everyone trying to get in there before it closed.
10. 6pm, Noticed the sun trying to come out!
11. 7pm Went back to the hotel to write this blog
12. 9pm went to eat pasta and more pasta!
13. 10:30pm passed in or out as they say down south or up north!

The Heat is on!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 12:49 am

On Thursday we arrived in Las Vegas,NV, I have been trying to get here for about……….hummmmmm along time and it just never worked out due to my working schedule. But I am here now.

If you can imagine the Christmas Holiday season times 30 decorated by the japanese all year round you will have Las Vegas. This city has so many lights I would like to see the cities electric bill. One of the good attributes about the city is that it is mostly flat and warm. There are hotels for miles too. I am not sure how they determine their rates either though. The hotels that you would think would be expensive are not and the cheap sad looking ones are way over priced.

The first day there mostly involved driving around the city to get are barings. After looking at some of the shows and entertainment happening in the area, I noticed when you come to this city you better have deep pockets. The cheapest shows can run you about $65 and that is sitting way in the back of the audiotrium with obstructed views all around you. Also this city has more replicas of every other countries ntional monuments than you care to imagine. This city is really a big play ground for adults. Often we would see parents with their children walking around in and out of casinos which was kind of weird too.

Friday we deicided to walk up and down “The Strip” to see what it had to offer.

This populated area is about 3.5 miles long and has so many stores that we did not make it to any of the shows we thought about going to in the evening. This is because by the time we had reached maybe the half way point of walking on “The Strip” it was already 9pm at night and had been in and around hundrends of stores.

You really need a 14 hour day just to walk up and down “The Strip” before you make any decent decisions about what there is and what you would like to do. Las Vegas has a lot going on and for some people this is great (if your coming from a St. George, UT). For me though 3 days is more than enough with the crazy busy life I have.

October 27, 2006

Curious St. George!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 5:55 pm

 

St. George UT is a very lopsided place with few people that I met from St. George,UT.  I say it is lopsided because if you only go on the west side of route I-15 you will think the city is pretty small. Everything you could possible need is on the east side.  You have Dixie College, High school, and a few stores for your basic needs. The city is clean with very wide streets and is located in between numerous huge, red mountains.  The visual part that is very memorable is that on the top of most of the  mountains are letters.  Such as the letter “H” in lights, which you can see from about 8 miles away.    Once you go over to the west though you see a huge “L” on the other mountain.  The main street leading to the west side is called St. George St. (How original?)  Once you make this 2 mile drive to the other side of I-15 though you see a huge mall, about 35 major restaurants, and an outlet of stores.  All this takes place along side a 2.5mile drive.  After examining what the town had to offer it was time to move on to the next destination.  St. George is located only 8 miles away from Arizona which makes it a great a place to stay if your trying to see most of the canyons and national parks within a few hours.

  This drive along I-15 is amazing.  You better not be tired though when drive it because there are so many sharp turns through the canyons you can easily end up “DED (please reference previous blogs about what can happen when you drive tired).” After about 17 miles in Arizona you look up and see  a sign that says “Welcome to Nevada.”

  If you were looking the wrong direction you would not even notice that you were in a different state (until it becomes completely flat). St. George ,UT  is about a 2 hour drive from Las Vegas, NV and this is where all the St. Georgians said they go to have fun.  So we decided to take their advice and see what kind of fun they get into.  Las Vegas here we come!

Zion was Hottttttttt!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 5:52 pm

Today I ran 10 miles attrying to get loose for this marathon Sunday in Detroit. Boy, am I out of shape compared to just a month ago. Any way after this we decided to role through Zion National park.
I enjoyed this park because they had shuttles you had to get on to enter the park which means I did not have to drive. The park was very well orginazed and fortunately we had great weather again. It seems as though we keep missing storms where ever we go. The rock formations here were like none I had ever seen before. They are extremely red and huge. After watching the museums introductory 22 min video the tour began. The first mountain of rock you see is the highest in the park wich is about 7830 feet high.

I was looking at this thing like ” When is it going to fall down since it is leaning over.” They then give you a prediction like 3001 years from now it will be washed away or by water of fall apart.

I was thinking “I am not waiting around to see if it is true.” Next was the 100 meter long walking trail which was right up my alley since I was not trying to walk any further after my work out in the morning.

Next was the river walk. This walk was filled with Lions, Tigers and Bears, Oh my! (just kidding). I just saw this deer eating lunch.

As the tour went on one of the cool stops was the Pulpit and the Alter formation. They call it this because that is what these huge rocks look like to most people.

The total route for the tour is about 90 minutes and it is an out and back route so one way is 45min. The shuttles run every 7 minutes so you can get off and walk around and then jump back on the next bus which is great. This cuts down on traffic and cars breaking down. This park goes up as one of my favorites. You may ask why? Probably…………..because I did not have to drive.

October 25, 2006

634 miles!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 3:26 am

You might ask yourself ” I wonder what Richard did today?.” Well the answer….. is I drove!

October 24, 2006

62 Degrees and it just Snowed!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 2:19 am

The weather here is crazy warm. It was 62 degrees today and it snowed 2 days ago. After working out early this morning I drove around the town Westminster,CO to see how lively the city was. There is alot going on with all the new buildings going up around here. Anyway the first stop for the day was the Denver Aquarium.

The cost to enter was $13 a person. The reason I am relaying the price is because I thought it was over priced. The Aquarium was nice and all but it took about 45 minutes to see everything.

After the Aquarium we decided to go down to the “16th Street Mall.” This is the place everyone in Denver said to go to since this was a main attraction. I had previously been here about 3 years ago and remember it like it was yesterday. Since the weather was so nice today it was perfect to walk around without a jacket. The Mall is really nice but it is also nothing you can not find on the west coast. After examining a few stores we decided that maybe the capitol building would be good to see. Denver is a very clean city that has a Washington D.C. feeling to it when you get to the heart of downtown.
Right next to the capitol building was the Denver Arts Museum that was closed to everyone except paying members so we couldn’t enter there either.
Then we decided to ask the young ticket lady at the museum what she would recommend doing. She said ” Hummm, I am not sure. I have lived here all my life and think there is a nice Irish Pub down the street you can go to. Oh yeah, have you tried the 16th Street mall?” By now I was feeling like it was time to move on and go see the movie “Prestige” I was very impressed with this movie even though it was not my immediate first choice to see. I was not impressed with the price of it though. When the man said $7 dollars for a 4:20pm show I said ” Man this is like New York almost.” I guess with all the new buildings going up they have to make their money somehow. By now it was almost 7pm and I was getting tired and hungry. Denver was nice, spic and span clean but, I think I prefer Boulder,CO. You know it is amazing that you never really know what memories these travel adventures will leave with you. On to the next stop, St. George, UT!

October 23, 2006

Order of Business

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 4:08 am

1. 8:45am- Ran 8 miles on the treadmill
2. 10:45am- Went to church
3. 1:30pm- Ate a turkey sandwhich
4. 3:30pm- drove to Boulder to run 8 miles outdoors where the top running athletes in America train at.
5. 6:30pm- Went to Unos pizza to eat a medium deep dish pizza all by myself.
6. 8pm- Went to Barnes & Nobles book store to buy “4000 questions”
7. 8:30pm – Did my laundry
8. 10pm- Wrote this blog
9. 11pm – Passed out!

Mile high!

Filed under: Uncategorized — rjjazz @ 4:00 am

Denver,CO is the next stop on the map. The drive to Denver took about 7.5 hours and was very scenic. During the trip I noticed six 18 wheeler trucks comnpletely turned over from driving to fast and hitting ice on the road. This was an easy indicator to me to slow down. The funny part about it all though there was still cars and trucks going by my at about 80 mph per hour.

After driving 414 miles on one tank of gas I decided it was time to get gas. The nearest town was called Buford with an elevation of 8000 ft. and a population of 2 people. I thought this was hillarious that a town can have 2 people and they have a gas station there. After filling up the car with gas I went in to get the receipt and began talking to the guy behind the counter. During our conversation and me asking him do only 2 people really live here he replied “no.” I said I thought not.” He then said “Just one person lives here now and that is me because my son decided to move away last year and go somewhere warmer.” I was thinking you have to be kidding me but this guy was dead serious. I started to think I want my own town named after me and I guess it is possible if I move out here somewhere.

When we arrived in Denver we noticed that the city was packed with people outside and every where even with snow blowing around everywhere. After checking in and buying some food for the next three days our quest was to find something to do interesting to do in the city. After browsing through the news paper and the internet. The “Lion King” stood out of all the performances happening. I had never seen it and thought this might be cool to see if there are affordable tickets left to get in. Once we arrived at the Hall there were no affordable tickets. All they had left was $75 seats and up. This was a bit much for me but I was determined to try and get in some how. After talking to all the ticket scallpers out front I decided to wait and see who does not sell their tickets and then negotiate a lower price once the show starts. As luck has it the very first guy and his wife I talked to got tired of trying to sell his to tickets and I was able to get his two tickets for that were $140 dollar tickets for $80. I thought to myself “score” Once we got into the show the seats were in a great location. We were located 6 rows from the front. I am more than happy I decided to stay and see the show because it was amazing. The costumes and dancing was really something to see. I had heard a lot about it but it is something you have to see in person to really get the grasp of the whole production. During the intermission I walked over and talked to the percussion player who happened to be from L.A. and we knew a lot of the same people. He was thrilled to talk about his current musical projects and even offered to get me on his latest one. So we will see what happens with this in the near future. This is evening turned out great and ended up being a memorable experiance in the ” Adventures of RJ’s Road trip.”

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