penny in a castle

A digital chapbook.

Boston the Brave

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I have, at times, been known to run.  Not very fast, and not for very long.  Certainly not in a marathon.  While I enjoy the freedom and effort of running, the marathon requires an amount of dedication and endurance that I have not had – may never have.  I have though, run in a 10 K race and several 2 K races with my children.

I want to encourage my children to be runners.

Each year, on Marathon Day in our city we wake up early. We haul the kids out and walk through our neighbourhood, dragging noise makers and buying fresh bagels for an outdoor breakfast.  We find a street where we know the runners will go by. And we wait.  Eventually others start to arrive with their lawn chairs and cheering signs.  We have unexpected meetings with neighbours and friends.  It’s an early morning carnival.

At first, we are only a few – then suddenly as if on cue, we become a big crowd – strung across the long route.    The police start cruising by to kick everyone off the road way – last year, we had our pictures taken with them.

Then there is a long period of expectant quiet.  Until suddenly, the cry is passed from person to person “They’re coming, they’re coming!”

The pace car zips by ahead of the leaders who, to my slow eyes seem to be sprinting. Sprinting!  All 42 KM.  They are so beautiful, so graceful, they can’t possibly be real. My children ask why I am crying – and I can’t explain how overwhelmed I am by the abilities of the human spirit.

Then, the masses of runners start coming. There is endless sounds of spectators clapping,  yelling, bells being rung, drums beaten.

But under it all, you can hear the steady beat of feet. Of breaths being taken.

You can see concentration as the mind readies for a long and difficult journey.

Many of them are running for a reason – they are supporting a cause, or to commemorate memory of a loved one.  For some, the journey is also personal – to know themselves through the act of doing something difficult.

They give us something to aspire to.

The bombing of Boston will never break that spirit, that strength, that hopefulness.

I still believe that hope is better than fear.  I refuse to be afraid.

I intend to keep running.  I will attend race events.  When I do, I will remember Boston the Brave.  Where the runners, and the spectators who love them, did what what comes naturally to them – and helped those around them in a time of need by offering assistance, opening their homes to the lost, and even offering to donate their own blood.

And I will tell my children to continue to live, and run, in that spirit.


Written by pennyinacastle

April 18, 2013 at 3:25 am

Posted in Random thoughts

Tagged with , ,

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