Emily and Howard sharing a start line selfie with Team Rocket
For the first time Amanda and I had another wheelchair team to start with at the Boilermaker, a young lady named Emily with her dad Howard pushing. It was wonderful to have met them. Emily is about 12 years old, trapped in a body that doesn’t work, but I could see the charming young lady hiding inside. They where only the second wheelchair team to start the 15 km race, Amanda and I being the first team to do the race in 2011.
Both Emily and her dad Howard were excited to be there, it was their first time at this race as a team. Howard being a local area resident and runner had done the 15 km a few times by himself, but this was the first time with his daughter. It was also the first race for their new racing chair.
All Gods critters have their place in the choir, Some sing low, some sing higher. Some sing out loud on the telephone wire. Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got, now!
This is my mantra and I repeat it over and over. It is my “little engine that could” and it keeps me traveling forward, first with my left foot, then my right. It helps move me. It’s not a lot, but it is enough.
It is a deceptively simple song called “A Place In The Choir”, written by Bill Staines in 1978. It starts with the chorus and has just five verses of four lines each. However, I only repeat the chorus, mostly because I can’t remember all the verses, but also because it’s too hard to think through the haze that stands between remembrance and self. My daughter, Lauren taught it to me when she was ten years old. She in turn heard it as a campfire song at Guide camp. I liked this quirky, innocent song, so I went looking for it. I found a guitar tab on the Internet and reformatted so that both my daughter and I could read it. It’s one of the many songs we perform for ourselves at home. We are a guitar and ukulele duo, accompanying an unlikely duet. One has a beautiful young voice and the other, an older, straining one.
Another staring line picture, this time at the VRPro Waterfront Trail 8km in Burlington, Ontario, September 20, 2014. It’s a great race mostly on the Burlington waterfront, out to the light house on the pier and back!
What’s so memorable about running the perfect race? Sure you might set a personal best, but let’s face it, while you may have pulled off the best race of your life, it was pretty boring. You run at your aim pace or maybe a little better, you focus on your goal, focus on your form and execute. When the going gets tough you reach deep and keep going. You write the time on your bib or in your run journal and that’s it. Other than a celebratory meal or refreshment after, what’s to remember about that run? Nothing. It was boring, it went exactly as planned. Unless you are one of the front runners, your race was successful, but there is no gripping story to tell. The perfect race is a perfect bore.