Friday, April 24, 2009

Boston Marathon 2009 Spectators' Report

I flew to Boston on Sunday to visit with ye olde college roommate, the photojournalist, Renee, and to catch Thomas and Ray in action on Monday, Patriot's Day, the 113th Boston Marathon.

After much texting and e-mailing back and forth about who would be where when [sample: Thomas: "What mile will we be at? Well, I'll start at mile 0 and will end at mile 26.2, visiting all the miles in-between in ascending order ...."; Ray: "No idea what pace aside from first wave. I’d guess though somewhere in the low 7’s seems like it’ll be fun and casual." SO VERY HELPFUL BOTH OF YOU], we decided on two viewing sites: first, between miles 13 and 14, and last, between miles 22 and 23.

We got there nice and early. Early enough to see this!

Elite women, mile 14ish

and this:
Marching people.

and this:

Team Noah was bookin' it.

and this:
#8858 Richard Whitehead, 32 M Nottingham GBR (in case you couldn't tell where he's from) 3:02:44 6:58 min./mile.*

As usual, I dressed for success:
Why won't people tell me I look crazy before I leave the house??? WHY??? Oh, and that's Davey the Clown standing with me. He has a rubber chicken sticking my leopard-begloved hand sticking out of his head, and yes, he is holding a rubber chicken, yet—somehow—I look like the crazy one.*

My only defense is that it was chilly and windy. Of course you won't believe me when you see the following photos.

I saw Thomas at both locations. He was in the zone at the first sighting, which he explains in his race report.

Both these guys had let me know what they'd be wearing. Thomas: "I'm planning on wearing a bright orange singlet with "Star of the Laune A.C." printed on it. It should be rather distinctive."

Well, you'd think so, wouldn't you Thomas?

I saw 10,000 orange singlets. OK, maybe they didn't all say "Star of the Laune A.C." on them. Luckily Renee has a keen eye.

I believe what Thomas was trying to convey here was the sense of the whole being greater than the parts.*

Or, maybe just ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch.*

Thomas was pulling down 6:50 minute miles. You know, the way you do in a marathon. If you are superhuman.

Ray, despite having let me know that he'd be wearing a BLUE singlet, eluded us. He was probably running backwards or something.

But eagle-eyed Renee caught Thomas again around mile 22ish:

Thomas reacts as he hears me screeching his name.*

He looks right as rain to me.*

Since I can count on exactly no hands the number of times an attractive young man has jumped out of a marathon to hug me, I was struck dumb. We communicated nonetheless. I highly recommend meeting someone for the first time this way.*

Ray was not far behind. In fact, he was exactly 11 seconds behind.

Ray takes time to tell me, "Jeanne, you're number one!"*

And...he takes my photo. One of 147 he will take along the course.*

My partners in crime:
l-r: Poor sad blog-less Bruce, Renee, Sarah

And after that I scurried downtown to meet Thomas, my camera ran out of batteries, I gave him some crappy fine, fine D.C. t-shirts, he gave me FINE CHINA from Ireland, I bought him some fried dough, we laughed, he cried, and then? He was gone.

There's more to this story but it will just have to wait.

Still to come: How Runner Susan saves Jeanne's love life.

*Photos courtesy Renee Dekona.


Kelly said...

Looks like fun. I'm surprised you didn't jump right in and join the race!

21stCenturyMom said...

You always know how to enjoy being a great cheerleader. And you and the chicken guy look pretty well matched. Only he looks nutty and you look cold. I kind of like your crazy hat!

21CM said...

As I live and breath your blog hates me and will never let me post comments using my google account. Let's see if it makes a liar out of me this time.

Nope - still hates me!

Phil said...

Now how cool was that. Thank you for posting all the great pics along with the excellent prose. It was fabulous seeing Thomas in a race on this side of the pond.



LBTEPA said...

Now now you can't just mention your love life being rescued and then STOP!!!! I NEED TO KNOW!!!

BettyBetty said...

I love the elite girl in arm warmers with belly bared and short shorts - gotta keep those forearms warm. I also love the guy from GBR...amazing.

Running Chick said...

Will you come back to Boston next year so I can hug you?

Petraruns said...

Love life? Girl? Next time? Don't do that to me. Now. Post. Now. Now. NOW!

Jade Lady said...

GREAT PHOTOS! Mr GB guy had some great muscles! And Thomas...well, he wore the perfect shirt for you to easily find him. That was really fantastic of you to go out and support your friends!

Rainmaker said...

I'm still just amazined you actually saw me...and that I actually saw you. Awesome! Oh, and thanks for the pics!

Thomas said...

Great you found our emailed directions ever so helpful. Always glad to be of assistance! I thought the orange singlet would be more distinctive, but your friend did a remarkable job spotting me.

Sorry for our meeting being so short on Monday, the whole weekend seemed to pass in blur, like someone had pressed the fast-forward button.

Thanks for the sign, I was thrilled to see my name on it. And for the shirts, not crappy at all. I'll be wearing them with pride during my summer training.

When I started looking out for you before mile 22 I thought I would start sobbing something like "I'm in so much pain", but luckily I felt better by the time I saw you. Unfortunately I hadn't thought of anything else to say yet, which is why I said exactly nothing.

And sorry for having a smelly, sweating runner jump on you without warning.

ShirleyPerly said...

Wow, you got to see your runners at two points along the course? My husband has only managed to see me only at one (top of Heartbreak Hill). Great job catching your friends and being a part of the race!

Calyx Meredith said...

I love the moniker "Blogless Bruce"! Great photos and fun spectator's report. I'm amazed that you found your runners in that crowd.

逆援助 said...

セレブ達は一般の人達とは接する機会もなく、その出会う唯一の場所が「逆援助倶楽部」です。 男性はお金、女性はSEXを要求する場合が多いようです。これは女性に圧倒的な財力があるから成り立つことの出来る関係ではないでしょうか?