Sunday, July 29, 2007

We had the courage

My walking team and I did an 8k walk today. Though it was an easy walk, we still came in dead last. Turns out the majority of participants were runners with a scant few walkers. In fact, there was maybe 2 other walkers aside from us.

At the start of the race, everyone but us took off running. The first leg of the 8k was along a busy road, closed off especially for the event. So here we were walking in last place, with the runners blocks ahead of us in the first few seconds. It wouldn't have been so bad except we were holding up a long line of cars. Needless to say, we were mortified.

We did a bit of running and tried to walk as fast as we could, but there was no way we could do the walk any faster. So, we plowed on and tried hard not to notice the police escort slowly crawling along behind us. That worked for a bit until the good constable decided to start cheering us on through her loudspeaker. We'd get to a kilometre marker and she'd say something like "way to go team!" When we finally got off the main road and onto residential streets, she started randomly playing us rock music by holding her loudspeaker microphone up to her radio.

After the 4k mark, embarrassment at being last and having our own personal police escort cheering us on so the whole neighbourhood could hear slowly waned to resignation. We were going to do this thing, pride be darned. Along the way the volunteers were still patiently waiting for us and enthusiastically cheered us on. When we got to the end, it was to loud applause from the remaining people and a participation medal for each of us for our efforts.

Though the medal was great, it was the kudos from the volunteers that made it worthwhile. Though we apologized for holding them up, they waived it off and said that at least we got out there and were better than everyone else who stayed home on their couches that morning. You know what? They're right. We did so much more than someone who stayed home.

A fellow walker's t-shirt summed up the whole experience:

The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start." - John Bingham

Who cares we came in last. We had the courage to start and keep going.


Sonya said...

Okay, you just put a smile on my face and I had to laugh (sorry, it is a funny story), but you are so ARE way better than those people who sat on their couches this weekend and did nothing. GOOD FOR YOU and CONGRATS! That quote is a keeper!

Kristen said...

The queote sums it put for sure. I haven't walked 8k recently, so you're soing better than me :). Thanks for the funny story.

Wheebs said...

C*O*N*G*R*A*T*S! You walked 8k! That's a huge accomplishment. Definitely better than all of the people who sat at home on their couches! And I'm sorry but I have to add an LOL for the police escort! Haha =D

TinyTrim said...

No apologies needed, it IS a funny story! We wanted to die of embarrassment at the beginning but I'm glad we kept going. I'm already looking back on it as being more funny than embarrassing. Who else can say they had their own cheering police escort??? Haha!

TheLibertine said...

haha, i can understand - i'd be mortified too - but you're right - you did so much more than most people, and an 8K walk is certainly impressive to me!