Friday morning … ok, Friday early afternoon, the Banks family and ourselves packed a total of 5 kids, 2 marathoners, about a dozen suitcases and more snacks than we would ever need into our two matchy matchy white family vehicles and carivanned our merry little way down to Southern Utah for the St. George Marathon.
By the time we hit Price, the kiddos were calling out “Are we there yet?” My response to that is “Is it time to throw them out of the car yet?” Although we have been down to that marathon several times, the Banks are first timers. Although I can not understand why in the world someone would PAY to run 26.2 miles, I was excited for them knowing that they are running a truly beautiful course.
Friday is the pre-run expo. The men picked up their numbers and walked around looking at all of the fun things that they wanted to buy but Leigh and I wouldn’t let them. Leigh and I went nuts picking up all of the free samples that were being offered. We didn’t even know what some of them were. And honestly, we didn’t care… they were FREE! The expo then caps off with a spagetti dinner where the kids enjoyed the meal much more than the adults. Lou called it school lunch.
Then, being the thoughtful wives that we are, Leigh and I packed up all of the kids into one car and sent them all home with the men so that we could go outlet shopping alone. We did however keep Toad with us and entertained him the whole evening with the one song that I have on my phone MP3 player… Guitar by Prince. I am sure that the other shoppers loved the background music.
The day of the Marathon was quite the sight. For the first time in 23 years, it rained… and boy did it rain! Harvey tells that it was raining so hard in places that he couldn’t see 10 feet in front of him. Why do people do this???? It was cold, raining, windy and downright miserable. We packed all five kiddos in my van and raced ourselves up Snow Canyon to catch a glimpse of Lou running by (we knew that Harvey had already passed.) Leigh and the kids made it just at the second that Lou passed by and they screamed out for him. Talk about perfect timing. Lous said that that was kept him going to the end. Ooooh Sweet huh!
Racing back down the canyon, we made it down to the finishing area. I grabbed all of the kids out of the car, put their jackets on and ran to the finish line. We got there just in time to see him cross. Despite the weather and the fact that his shoes were full of water, Harvey still ran fast enough to qualify for the Boston Marathon. Woo Hoo! I personally think that it was because his legs wanted to get into some longer pants. Those short short running shorts couldn’t have helped! Way to go honey! Love ya! (He still is defending those daisy dukes of his and insists that everyone wears them!)
It was so cold and raining that we didn’t stay for one extra second. We packed up everyone in the car and bee lined it back to the hotel. By bee line, I mean that we waited in traffic for an hour to get onto the freeway.
In short, we are so proud of our men. They finished in great time. The weather was horrible. They were cold and dishearted and were ready to quit several times throughout the race but they endured. Way to go Harvey and Lou!!!
P.S. Lou is already planning on going next year! He didn’t let that weather break his spirit!