26 June 2009

Day 34

Troyes, originally uploaded by Ryan Runs Europe.

33 Kilometers.
I woke up around 8:00 and had breakfast with Ingrid before Philippe came and picked me up to give me a quick tour of his workplace. He knew that I was an architect, and working in metal construction, he thought I would be interested. His work was way cooler than I expected it to be...after showing me the offices, secretaries, architects and draftsman, he brought me through a door in the back of the office which opened into an enormous shop. It was then that I realized that his firm was an entirely independent design build firm, and that the elements of the 3D models and plots that I had seen inside were getting machined 100 feet away, ready to be assembled on site. The machines there were amazing, capable of moving, bending, welding, cutting, drilling (etc...) enormous pieces of metal. It was incredibly exciting for me. I love machining things, and a facility like that is an aspiring architect's pornography. It is awesome to think that all of the draftsman and designers are only a hallway away from where everything is produced, and that they are incredibly familiar with the capabilities of the machinist.
After returning to the house, Ingrid gave me directions to Troyes which kept me off of major highways, and I set off excited to see the cathedral there. Some days it is hard to start running. Back at school we would sometimes walk 20, 50, or rarely 100 m before someone would start running. Today it took me 7000. After that first running step though, it was all easy to Troyes. When I got near town, I stopped in a big supermarket and bought myself 3.25 liters of liquid and was very surprised at how fast I drank it all. I also ate a couple pastries from the boulangerie. Walking out of the shopping center feeling like I was going to puke (way too much in my stomach), I stopped for a moment to enjoy Toto's "Africa" playing over the loudspeakers.
Troyes is a beautiful little city with a medieval charm. After wandering about the town for a while, I stumbled upon the cathedral. This is another cathedral that I saw while awake in my medieval architecture class back at school...it was way more exciting in person, as these things normally are.
At six, I met up with my couchsurfing host Julien, and had dinner with his parents and some friends from school. While preparing dinner, they asked me if I liked seafood, and I lied and said yes (not really wanting to change their plans). I have also set a goal to start eating all the things I don't like on this trip. The dinner was delicious. I guess that's just the power of good French cooking.


  1. Hi! I came to your blog from "blogs of note" ...and it is incredibly inspiring! You say that anyone who helps you out with your journey is a hero, well you should know that you are also a hero by achieving your dreams with a smile on your face and showing others that making their dreams a reality is possible. You are truly an inspiration, merci beaucoup!

    Amy (Milwaukee, WI)

  2. hey ryan =)
    eating things u don't usually do can give surprizing results!!
    i always love to try new meals whenever i travel, although i sometimes end up with an empty stomach after choosing some weird exotic dish but there also times i find myself adding the meal to my mental list of favorites
    ~ wishing u all the best from saudi arabia

  3. I was worried when yesterday you didn't post
    Glad everything is alright :D

  4. Hi Ryan,
    I though that athletes eat hi protein when they run. I don't understand how you can eat pastries. I guess you know more than I do.

  5. I am surprised you can run the distances you do without drinking water while you are running! You are awesome. As always, thanks for sharing this journey. -Jessie

  6. I just wanted to make a quick post to thank all of you for leaving encouraging words for me on this blog. It is always the first thing I check after I get to a computer after my email. Thank you for helping me keep going! It is raining outside and I don't have a place to sleep for the night (in a library), but I've got some motivating people behind me, and a lot of hospitality thus far to give me hope.
    To answer a few of the past comments that I maybe haven't clarified before:
    I don't have a huge budget for this trip, only about 1 US Dollar a mile for the rest of the way at the moment.
    I don't carry water mainly because I have never carried water, it sloshes around and is heavy. I guess I would rather get where I was going faster and easier and get in when I need it. It is pretty easy to find most of the time...but when it gets a little bit hotter I will probably have to start taking it with me in more rural areas.
    I do eat a lot of pastries. It is France, and that is what there is to eat. To be honest, I know almost nothing about what I am doing. I'm just a kid with a backpack, a good pair of running shoes and a world of people who are kind enough to help me along my way. I am pretty happy with that.

  7. Hey Son, you are doing well so far! You certainly need the carbs for energy, but I trust you are also getting lots of protein and phospates (sp?) from energy drinks and the like. You look well in the photos and your blog, as always, keeps me smiling. I am proud of you! Keep having fun, what amazing memories you are documenting!

  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.