National Running Day was yesterday here in the USA and I celebrated in part by serving my wife warm humble pie.
One of my favorite professional runners is Deena Kastor and she was in town (NYC) yesterday to celebrate National Running Day and do a lap around the Central Park Reservoir with us common folk. You have to understand that this bionic-like woman runs five-minute per mile marathons, so to actually run with her is something of a stretch. Anyway, back to that pie. I told my wife that I wanted to snap a picture of Deena at today's run but she said that I would never get close to Deena with all her runner fans want to to meet her too. "Well, we shall see," I said. My wife again assured me that I was dreaming of pie in the sky and I, equally assured said, "We'll see who's dreaming. All I have to do is ask."
Being that is was National Running Day I expected to see a lot of people running but that wasn't the case. It rained and for some that means staying in doors. For me I say "Horray!" Rain means staying cool, staying cool means running faster. It also means less runners desiring to meet Deena Kastor.
I arrived the festivities fifteen minutes late and decided to sprint as fast as I could around the bridle path. There were several hundred other runners stepping through mud puddles while dipping their heads under bent and swaying cherry trees. There wasn't any hoopla but never-the-less we were all running and getting really dirty which, is a sort of badge of honor. Coming up to Engineer's Gate, the unofficial start and finish of the loop I saw a small, Artemis-Mercury-like figure in standing in the middle of the path. "Be still my beating heart. Could it be? It must be but could it be?" I cranked up my pace and low and behold, it was her. It was DEE-NAH! I had seen her once before as she walked by me in Central Park last summer but she had just finished running a race and I couldn't and wouldn't interrupt her but today, she was here for me, I mean us to meet and Fate arranged it and there she was standing, smiling being cute and athletic all at once and I said, "Deena, you're my hero can I take a picture with you?" You're my hero? I can't believe I actually said that. "Of course, please," her Speediness responded. All I had was my lousy phone camera and the kindness of another runner to snap the above shot. A profeesional photograher was standing near by and said, "Wait, I wanna' grab one of you two." And the camera shuuter clicked and we were captured together forever. Ahh, I was so happy, I got to meet Deena. Lovely Deena. I couldn't wait to run back home to tell my wife that I got the picture that she said I wouldn't be able to get. And just when I thought that it couldn't get any better someone ask Deena to autograph his sweat stained running shirt. WHAT?!! Wait a minute, I want in on this! I keep a small Sharpie in my bag for those 'you never know when you'll need something to write with' moments. "Huh, Deena would you mind signing my shirt too, please?" She smiled sincerely and said, "Yes, of course." (She is extremely friendly, accomodating and real.) And on my left shoulder of my blue, short-sleeve techincal shirt that I will never wear again, bares Her name.
I beamed the entire six mile run back home. Everytime my legs felt a little fatigued, I glanced over at my Mighty Isis signature on my left shoulder and the rockets kicked in. "She is going to be so surprised when I get home." My wife was surprised but happy too. "I'll take a slice of that humble pie now," she said. "Okay, but don't eat too much," I told her. "Bruce Springsteen is in town and I plan on asking him out for coffee." She paused, cocked her head and said, "I guess if you never ask you'll never know."