10/10/08

Hartford

"Learn to run when feeling the pain: then push harder." WILLIAM SIGEI

Early wake up call to get to Hartford today and went on my adventure: Metro North to New Haven and then from New Haven taking a Bus (Amtrak) to Hartford. Left my New York Apartment door at 7:30 am and arrived in Hartford a little after 11:15ish.

What to do now? My hotel: Holiday Inn Express was literally right across the street from the train station. The start and finish lines are literally right across the street from me…well a 5 minute walk. It’s absolutely marvelous!

Ok…so put my things down and checked e-mail. I was surprised about how many people had wished me luck….I was amazed. I always get such a thrill from all the Flyers when they care so much…and I do appreciate it.

So I went on my ways to venture out into the city and explore Hartford. I was on a mission to get Gatorade and get a bagel. I had already packed up banana’s which was a smart thing. So…I venture and see the city for a couple of hours, while I wait for RD to come in from Amtrak and go to the expo together. Walked around, got all my things and just enjoyed the foliage and took tons of pictures.

I checked out the park at the very end which was where the start of the marathon was going to end. This was across from my hotel that I was staying at and I totally missed it when I started on this adventure. So, I came back around and figured by this time I would get some lunch, eat at the park and then wander some more. I saw the finish line and envisioned that this was my last marathon and I just had to finish this marathon. I saw the many people working hard to get this event done and basically envisioned myself being done at this point.

RD gave me a ring, she had arrived and I was to meet her at her hotel, the Hilton which was right across from the expo. The Hilton had these card keys that had the logo of the ING Hartford marathon, the whole lobby was decked out in orange and RD was psyched. It was her first marathon and I could not blame her. All she had to do was just finish and enjoy it because she was going to be doing NYC in a month with an Achilles member. I had told her that she was lucky that she chose to do Hartford before NYC because if she had reversed the order, she would have thought that Hartford would be lame. (Not lame, just a different marathon when you go from small town to big city – NYC is none like any other)

After straightening out many difficulties with the room (she had reserved two queen sized beds and she had gotten one king sized bed) and switching rooms, we decided to venture to the expo. The small expo where we roamed around, got our shirts and bib numbers and went to every booth. It was fun, after that we just roamed around the city…and then it happened…

RD remembered that when she switched rooms she had forgotten to take out her Ipod from the charging plug in the bathroom where she had placed it in the beginning, then she switched rooms and forgot to take out her ipod…so we frantically went back to the hotel, thinking nothing could happen to it. It has got to be in the hotel…or in the room for that nature. We went to the front desk and then they went through many processes due to the fact that they had just placed another guest into that room…RD coud not take it anymore, she went straight up to the room and asked them.

WHAT? Your telling me that it’s not in the room? You have to go to housekeeping now?

Uh, I went to the lobby, sat down and then let RD take her time and run through the motions with many people…I sorted my stuff that we had gotten in our goodie bags and then RD came back. She still had not found it, she was going to rip some heads off…so we return to her room and low and behold…

IT WAS IN HER ROOM…ALL THIS TIME!

Oh my…oh my, she apologized to the many people and then finally rested. I stayed there till a little before dinner time and then went back to my hotel for an hour before dinner. I was to have dinner with her and her aunt and friend…and AD was to join us as well. AD is the Colorado friend who is in close relations with SR, a flyer runner and friend. Long story straight, she was one of my best friends from high school.

We go to dinner, AD was late and the waitress messes up my order. RD and her Aunt straighten things up and I am fed double portions…and then my second meal I order as I go out the door for my second dinner. Second dinners are becoming my ritual during marathons due to the meltdown that I face during my first two marathons. I only stumbled upon this due to the fact that I had two dinners to attend when I was at the Vermont Marathon and low and behold…I BQed that next day. I don’t know what it may have been, but I consistently do that now and it has become a ritual in my mind that it works.

After dinner, AD and I roam around the finish line park. It was chilly and I just don’t know what it will be like tomorrow morning before the race. AD and I catch up as I eat my second dinner in the hotel room…I reside to making sure that everything was in order for the next day and finally stretch before I head to bed. I slept like a log even though there were people partying outside at a local bar in back of the hotel. Awaiting for this marathon to begin so I can be done with my running season.

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