Three thousand people makes quite an early morning crowd. And that’s just the runners and walkers. You need to add more for family and friends that came along to encourage plus the few thousand schoolchildren arriving for the events to follow.
We started promptly. The “elite” runners and others that knew what they were doing in the front of the pack. Then we all surged forward, stepped across the electronic timing line, and parted around the photographer on his ladder.
The herd, myself included, advanced on the park road, crossed a bridge, and turned a corner to go up the hill. I saw my first and only casualty prior to the first mile marker. I’m thinking Mr. Squirrel fell victim to the final motor vehicle to pass by instead of a runner or stroller.
Step, step, step. Runners passed me then slowed their pace. I kept steady and eased ahead. Once pause to retie a shoelace. Step, step, step. Accept the cup of water at the half-way point and keep moving. Down a slope, up again, another corner and around the outdoor theater. Mile two is past. Where’s the next one?
The quicker among us have finished and come along the side to encourage others with the sight of the earned necklace. Step, step, step.
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