Tuesday, June 22, 2010

RUNNING IN BOSTON - 2nd or 3rd try

If some of you are getting this for the 2nd time or even the 3rd time, I apologize. For some reason, my subscriber thing didn't send this post out to those that subscribed by email after I wrote it yesterday, so I'm trying again. Between the airline industry screwing me up and cyperspace taking it's shots, maybe it's time to go back to dirt roads and long hand letters!

"Boston's freeway system is insane. It was clearly designed by a person who had spent his childhood crashing toy trains". - Bill Bryson

Hi Guys – Sitting in the Charlotte Airport filling up a 3 hour layover caused by my recently documented US Airways fiasco when my flight was cancelled in Birmingham 4 days ago and my ticket to Boston had to be-invented. Actually, Charlotte’s not bad at all. Just had a chicken wrap and I’m sitting in a rocking chair in the sun about to take a snooze. I’ll probably miss this flight and have to deal with the same customer service goofballs I dealt with last Thursday. So, we’ll consider this a RWA Extra and I’ll tell you about running in Boston this weekend.
For those of you who have never been to Beantown, it’s sports crazy and with something like 37 colleges around, there is always running events going on. Usually, I head down to the Charles River and have run along the running trail that goes on for 11 miles one way. There are maps you can pick up in the running stores that will tell you, to the hundredths of a mile, how far your run is if you cross any of the several bridges to the other side along the way. This time, however, instead I ran through Brookline to a reservoir called Jamaica Pond. There is a 1.42 (plug for Garmin) mile running/walking trail around the pond that is gorgeous. Folks running, walking, fishing, whatever suits their fancy. I think every Thursday night they have a 4.2 mile fun run that is pretty well attended each week. What was real great was that the humidity was 52%! Now, for those of you reading this that don’t know it, I live, and run, in Birmingham, Alabama where the humidity hovers around 120% during the summer. Holy crow, it’ll downright smother you. Had the best run I’ve had in a while. The next day, I decided to do my Boston Marathon run. OK, it was just 3+ miles from my son’s house to the finish line, but after having done the BM 5 times and I don’t think I ever ran the WHOLE last three miles, this was unique. I absolutely love the Boston Marathon, and to run the final stretch down Beacon Street, hear the ghosts of crowds past, glide up Hereford Street to screams in my head “You can do it…half mile to go”, turn left onto Boylston Street and picture the finish line 600 yards away was “Walter Mitty” incredible. It was early enough on Sunday morning that I actually could run down the middle of the street to the finish line – they never remove it…always painted across the road! I bent over, touched the BM Unicorn logo, turned around and headed back home, hoping the few folks watching me thought that I had started in Hopkinton, 26.2 miles away, and was now headed back on a 52 mile odyssey. On my way back, I had to take a detour and circumvent Fenway Park, an absolute Mecca for any baseball fan. Whenever I run in a distant city, I always try to find the local professional sports stadium and see if I can find an open door and sneak a peek of the field. It actually works about half the time if it’s early enough – this time was no-dice. Oh well!
I had a great time this weekend visiting with my family and especially with Adam, my grandson. Three generations together on Father’s Day is an experience not all fathers get to experience. I hope you all had a great Father’s Day, and if you got to throw in a personal running adventure, then all the better. Now, let’s see if US Air can get me back home without any mention of “we’re sorry, but…”. I’ll see you on the humid Alabama roads - AL

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