While I do concede that it was a day that should live in infamy...from 1941...my 12/7 came in 1967....when my mom, my three siblings and I, boarded a TWA airliner in the dead of night...on a chilly English airport tarmac...heading for our new lives in California. I can still see the plane's tail, branded with the massive corporate identifier, facing in a direction in which I really had no desire to go. I was happy where I was, groovin' with the Beatles' generation, eating fish and chips, sausage rolls, Crunchie and Flake candy bars, roasts on Sundays at my Nan's, and following Tottenham Hotspur, arguably the premier football team of the time. However, apparently, moms trump teenage wishes. Far too often.
Fast forward 42 years....to the day. Needless to say, a truckload of stuff had happened since that disappointing day in 1967. I was in Santa Barbara, California. Things could have been a lot worse, right? I was putting the finishing touches on a year's worth of looney...wrapping up 12 marathons in 12 months...running down a steep hillside with the finish line at Santa Barbara City College in the distance. This had been a difficult one, primarily because I was so anxious to put the 12 in 12 to bed...and move on with my life. My friends John and Bob beat me to the finish...by way more than a country mile...but still welcomed me in as though I had bested them.
Since then, I have run little. I didn't work to not run...but I didn't try real hard to run. I just couldn't find a reason to do it anymore. Until now.
If you've been here before no doubt you know that I did 30 marathons from the time I turned 50 until Santa Barbara, at 57. They are listed down the left side of the blog. As you might imagine, my mind is filled with countless pictures from those events and locales...and the people I met along the way. I trained with some of them, almost every one of them faster than me. I ate with many more of them...before and/or after some stellar events, and some not-so-stellar others. And...I have tipped back perhaps more than my share of adult beverages with those folks. Too bad. You can't have them back. What we shall have to do...is to try now, to even the score.
Of late, I have been itching to get back into the mix. I miss you people.
I have run with Patti's, John's, Bert's, Julianne's, Todd's, Sandra's, Juliette's, Laura's, Bob's, Sarah's, Leslie's, Phil's, Michelle's, Russ's, Kevin's, Evan's, Elise's, and so many, many more. I am so itching to run with Ioanna's, Rachel's, Marty's, Kari's, Barbie's, and so many others, that I can't pull the plug just yet.
My personal best for the 26.2...was the first in the 12 in 12 challenge, CIM, Folsom to Sacramento in 2008. 4:56. I came close to beating that a couple of times over the following 11 months. During that same race, my first-time-marathoner pal, Les, qualified for Boston.
A few months later...I "qualified" for acceptance into the Goon Squad Runner's club...based in Boston. Yes, THAT Boston. As I was sitting in my Motel 6 room, having a beer, after finishing the 12 in 12 in Santa Barbara, I got a congratulatory call from the Goons. One of the best calls...ever.
They may have wondered where I went...after they gave me their first-ever Craziest Goon Award for 2009. I didn't go far. I just needed a break. I'm ready to kick it up again...two years later...in short order.
For my 60th birthday...in 2012.. I have decided I am doing another "mary." I just don't know which one. Here...are my options....all in March of 2012.
Little Rock: Bill Clinton is one of my heroes. Want to go to the Presidential Library.
New Orleans: Post race food...Hello!
Los Angeles: I signed up for this one in 2010...then bagged. Redemption?
Bath, England: Holy crap, this looks fun!
River City, Sacramento: Local.
Barcelona, Spain: What part don't you get? Issue is $$$$
The deal is...training begins in earnest on December 7th. (Get it?)
For those checking in to see how the plans for the month-long bike JOGLE bike ride are going....I would love to do it...just can't afford to take a month off from work. I don't get vacation pay anymore...so there you go. Still working on it...but don't think it's going to happen.
Let me know what you think of my options. I will decide by 12/7/2011...and let you know.