Sunday Morning ~ Twenty-six point two in New York
November 5, 2018
This will be quick and unedited as I need to move the car from a gorgeous parking spot on 84th before street cleaning happens in an hour.
It’s Monday, not Sunday; I didn’t even try to do this yesterday. We were up before dawn to get the metro to the ferry to the bus to the starting line on Staten Island. One of the runners who’d done the Chicago marathon a few weeks before said it was easier to fly to Chicago, get a hotel room, and run that marathon than it was to get to the starting line in New York! But it was so worth it! After all my anxiety about being too old to do this, just being at the starting line was fantastic and worth the entrance fee and effort. To see how it is all organized and how friendly and diverse everyone is, the helpfulness, the canon going off as runners start off across the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge as Frank Sinatra sings New York New York, was inspiring. The race starts in waves (I was in the last slow-poke wave) and watching thousands upon thousands of people move along with the structure looming against the skyline was fantastic. I didn’t even try to take a photo of it all, just wanting to take it all in. Plus, I didn’t want to carry my phone with me. The day was perfect, cool and sunny, and I felt like the universe was telling me we’d all be ok. That was a good feeling the Sunday before the most important election in our history.
People had told me how fun this marathon was to run, and they weren’t kidding. Just the signs people were holding were enough to entertain me for five hours. “You’re running better than our government”, “Run like a supreme court justice to an open bar”, “I’ve been training all week to hold this sign”, “Pain is just bread in French”, were a few of my favorites, but there were hundreds. Little kids held out their Halloween candy. Fabulous musicians played all along the way. Strangers cheering for strangers. It highlighted how good most humans are, how much we can endure when we think we can’t go any further, and how willing others are to get you to the finish line. Dear Ruth fed and cheered for us, opened up her home for showers and champagne, and made us feel like superheroes. And so many sent well wishes and cheered from afar and that was so loving and encouraging. Crossing that finish line in Central Park has been a longtime fantasy of mine and thank you to everyone who helped me get there. Hopefully we can ride this wave though Wednesday!
Love to all,