PG runs the Boston Marathon [Was this the year Grampa ran the Boston Marathon with a broken leg (a stress fracture)?].
No, that was in 1982. In 1983 I ran a comfortable race and finished in just under 3:30 (the cutoff time to be an official finisher.
But here is what I wrote in 1982 – – – –
“Patriots Day, 1982, Hopkinton, Mass. 11 AM
” – – Number X972 is pinned to my shorts. It is warm and sunny and the wind is from the west. The tension among 7623 official runners mounts as we wait for 12 noon and the start of THE marathon. If all goes well, I hope to cross the finish line in front of the Prudential Building by 3:30 this afternoon.
“4:02 PM – – I lurch over the finish line. All did not go well. Every muscle in my legs is sore and threatening to cramp. My breath is in gasps even though I haven’t run a step of the last 5 miles. But a big smile is on my face, and my heart is filled with joy. I have conquered my soreness and I have finished. I have been cheered by a million (literally) strangers with cries of, “you’re looking good X972 (They lied in their teeth, but I loved them for it). The screaming of the Wellesley students still rings in my ears. Thea, my children Phil and Lisa, and a favorite niece Nancy have leap-frogged the race, cheered me and photographed me from 4 places, and Phil and Lisa even ran a half-mile with me. And, as the legs stiffen and I slow from a run to a jog to a fast walk to a slow walk, I know – not wish or hope or think, but KNOW – that they will not love me any less for falling so far short of my goal.”
One of the places we staged to watch Dad was near mile 12. I joined him, but after about half a mile I was slowing him down so dropped out. I would have stood a better chance if I’d joined him at mile 24 instead!
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