Friendship can be defined in a lot of different ways. One of the most beautiful examples I can think of was Sancho Panza's friendship for Don Quijote. Sancho didn't ignore that his friend was crazy-- Sancho knew that Don Quijote was crazy. Sancho supported him anyway:
"God's will be done," said Sancho. "I'll believe all your worship says, but straighten yourself a bit in the saddle...."
No one tried to talk me out of tilting this windmill. On the other hand, plenty of people helped me stay straight in the saddle! Maybe I should call you all my "enablers" instead of my "supporters"!
Thanks to all of you. Andrew, Pedro, and Fabricio who met me at mile 31 and paced me for the next 15 miles. Claire and Marcia ran with me on Adams track, and way back in August did not ask me whether I was going to do this-- they just asked me "when?" And Phoebe, who helped me steer through the details of permissions, and who got me through the OCC board last year. Jerome, Dana, Joy, and Gina, who don't even have children in the school came and cheered me on. Ibis and Karen and Maria who cleared me to use the track for the last ten miles of the run-- and thank you, Ibis for opening up and cheering me on as well. Donna, David, Maricarmen, Paco, Susana, Scott, Elisa, Diego and Marta came and ran a few laps and helped out Sonia-- you guys are our constant friends and we're always grateful for you. And thank you to everyone who contributed to the OCC-- Oyster-Adams is a better school because of you. If you're still thinking about donating, you can click here to do so.
And of course, thank you to Sonia and Daniel. What kept me going was knowing you'd be at the finish line.
It went so much better this year than last. It mostly was just better training-- I came a lot better prepared this time, having done more and longer long runs, having tested all of my equipment better, and having been much more consistent in my training. Also, just having the experience of completing the distance last year was a big psychological help. But, whereas last year I had to walk a lot after the 30 mile point, this year I was able to run the entire 46 miles. I even was able to run the last three miles at a pace near 9 minutes per mile.
Now I get to think about what to do next. Sonia has already started talking about next year-- so I guess I have the most important permission already! Now that I've done two of these, I know that it's not just a fluke. If I do a third one, I suppose I can consider it a habit. With it going so well this time, I'm wondering if I shouldn't try to get in at least one official ultramarathon a year besides this one. Hmmm.
But for now, I guess I should concentrate on recovering to the point that I can go downstairs without gritting my teeth!