Difficult to write this! but combination of recent events – especially those specifically targeted at Americans – have lead me to the difficult decision of deferring my entry to TransArabia to 2016.
Brutality of the ISIS terrorists and their proximity to the race venue (now less than 50 miles from the Jordanian border) have created a situation where my safety radar has gone from “scary but worth the risk” to “reckless endangerment”. In talking to several people from the region (military and otherwise), it seems that a woman traveling alone would be at particular risk; not just from ISIS but from the “wanna be’s” that would take the opportunity to target a traveler – mostly for being American but especially for being female. The random brutality taking place there daily is unbelievable.
I get that my risk tolerance may be different than some others. I’m the sole surviving parent of a (very cool & fabulous) son. Yes, he’s whip smart and highly self-sufficient – but I think being an orphan at 22 would suck. My opinion.
I have also found through recent experience in South Africa that when I’m stressing about personal safety, I don’t race well. At all.
So I’m making the call — and I’m 99.999% sure it’s the right one. Still… knowing that I’ll miss running through Petra this year? makes my stomach hurt.
Next up: Lighthouse 50K, Palo Duro Canyon 50-mile + Marathon des Sables in Morocco, April 2015