Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Richmond Run

On Veterans Day we loaded up the car and headed out of town for another Pull racing adventure.  This time our destination was Richmond, VA for the SunTrust Richmond Marathon on November 12.

We headed out of town mid afternoon with plenty of time to arrive in Richmond and pick up Joe's race packet.  It twas good we were so far ahead of schedule because we experienced some VERY slow moving traffic followed by a mishap with Mapquest and Trisha which dumped us in a not-so-nice street in the middle of Richmond nowhere near our final destination.  Once we got our bearings, we headed off to the correct location.  We didn't make it but a few feet when Joe stopped the van, backed up and rolled down his window to talk to someone in a stopped car in the middle of the street, all to Trisha's begging and pleading not to stop for fear we might all be shot.  I guess Joe didn't think the 20-something blond girl in the VW bug, waving her arms for help, looked threatening.  In the end, it was good we stopped, as she, too, was lost and was headed to the same place as we were.  Her presence also helped justify my mishap with Mapquest...I wasn't the only one who had done it!

After roaming around the packet pick up area for awhile, having another small mishap at the gas station wherein someone else accidentally prepaid for our gas, we headed to the hotel (hootel according to the girls) to get settled in for the night.

As we were unpacking the car, I realized that I'd forgotten one important detail:  the pack n play.  Not wanting to pay the hotel to use one of theirs, we simply blocked off the corner of the room, placed blankets on the floor and then watched Joey climb out of his "bed" approximately two minutes later.  Fortunately, it was late and he was tired, so once all the lights were out, he gave up climbing out, cried for a few minutes and then settled down to sleep.

The next morning we packed up our gear, left behind our makeshift pack n play and headed to the start line.

The morning was VERY chilly.  Despite hats, gloves and mittens, the girls were having a difficult time staying warm.  For awhile they hid in this faux doorway in an effort to get out of the breeze.

We saw Joe several times along the course

The girls, especially Aliyah, were very careful to make sure Joey didn't go anywhere he shouldn't.

At mile 19 we found Joe, a bit behind pace and walking.  Despite his excellent start and ahead of pace 1/2 marathon, and all my heckling to get his lazy bones moving, his finish was difficult and disappointing.

The one upside to a difficult finish is that he had plenty of time to run across the finish line backward.  He said he'd always wanted to do that and so, in one small way, he redeemed what had otherwise been a pretty terrible run.

Joe recovered with some post-race food, which included complimentary Papa John's Pizza, while the kids and I enjoyed being out of the elements.

After a bit of playing,

resting and visiting the bathrooms of this rather posh hotel lobby, we escorted a limping and tired Joe to the van and headed back to Maryland.  Thus closes another chapter in the Pull race anthology.

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