Had a Great time!
I had to share this with my fellow runners when I heard the sounds like you had a terrible time came from a couple of them.
I had a great time in New York and enjoyed the experience once again. I think the life lessons is what I really enjoyed the most. Most times its not the race but the journey where things are really learned and treasured.
Friday morning my plane was scheduled to board at 5:15 am so I got up at 2 am and got ready and off I went to the airport. Really surprised how little time it takes without traffic in the morning so I got there at 3:30 am. Well the airlines open up at 4:15 so I read some. Once they opened I was informed what they did for me was put me on a later flight (how can you thank someone for this?) because the Houston destination plane was delayed to leave. The plane was scheduled to leave at 5:50.
I arrived at Houston and guess what? The plane to New York had to wait for the pilot coming in from San Antonio and would be leaving 45 minutes late. Pilot gets on board and announces we have a mechanical problem that has to be fixed. Time went on and it started like we would never leave at all but finally all was well and we left at 11:30 three hours late but made it.
Here’s the disappointing part. Sheri, Dana, and I were going to be off to the expo and then 6 pm dinner. This really never happened so I did feel bad and felt I had let them down. I did the Saturday expo and came back to hotel and watched a football game.
Sunday morning came and we were all suppose to meet at the start at the “open area” at the starting point. Sheri, Dana, Lynn, and Bill were all on the Galloway bus so they were together. I was at the airport hotel so taking the Galloway bus downtown would have been a logistic nightmare that morning. The directions were not clear I received from headquarters and there was more than one open area on Staten Island. I never found them but I knew they had each other.
As I mentioned 42,000 runners so it was amazing and great busy start. Really can’t run very fast of course. I felt great and the plan would be to go slow the first half and gradually pick up the pace the second half of the race. I always like to do something good while visiting somewhere so I though maybe I could check for pot holes in Brooklyn and let them know where they are. Mile 7 1/2 I found one! You know when you are at a sporting event and the whole crowd gasps out loud? Well you look around to see what happened and this time it was me. I really scared them!!
I hit the street hard and put a whole new meaning to ” getting it down in Brooklyn”. Split knee open pulled calf muscle, twisted back, bruised other knee. I got up of course and decided it would be a great day to do a long training run. When this happened it took awhile to take effect and my left calf muscle decided to cramp from mile 16 to the finish.
OK there’s the finish line I did it just have to get a cab back to the hotel about 10 miles away. Did you know the chance of getting a cab after this event and at this time of day were a snowballs chance in hell or as one person told me, “it’ll never happen”.
So you ask how could this be a good time?
Well I never had a plane delay before and although very inconvenient and disappointing my plane was not cancelled and I got there. Yes missed seeing Bill, Sheri, Dana, and Lynn at the expo but got there in the morning. I met the head Mizuno guy I knew and Wish who writes for Runtex and Austin Runners Magazine.
Yes I hit the streets in Brooklyn but was able to get up and finish and sure could of been a lot worse. I hurt some but there were amazing people running with artificial limbs and disabilities that made my cramps seem like sissy stuff and the cramps were temporary for me theirs were not. I saw an American flag carried by one of the fireman along side another runner with an artificial limb. This was in Central Park I had to congratulate him.
As I passed one runner Oscar and his appointed aid coach the crowd was yelling at Oscar to run you can do it. Not sure what disability he had but coach snapped back at he crowd repeatedly Oscars done quit yelling. I said in passing, “great job proud of you man”, a small voice came out and said , “you too”, and he started running again! Sorry coach Oscars not done yet!
Oh yes the cab ride. I had my arms up of course as the cabs zipped by one by one. One stopped and from the back window a hand motioned me towards the cab. A couple in the back seat said, “sir please get in you will not be able to catch a cab here today”. When we get dropped off the cab is yours and you ran the marathon today and you are our hero,” how many have you done”? I think you know where it went from there. As she left the cab she said over and over, “can you believe 53”? I just had to laugh.
Traffic was horrible and I put the cab driver in a ride from hell. We learned a lot about each the other the next 1 1/2 hours. I did say 10 mile ride to the hotel right?
So how can this be a great time? I learned I could be cool when things don’t go as scheduled and no matter what I’m going to finish the race even if I fall and stagger. Sheri and Dana are still talking to me.
How lucky am I to have all my limbs so I can feel pain? The very spirit of sharing lives anywhere even in the back seat of a Yellow cab in New York..
“Yes I had a great time”!