In 2008 when Jay ran the New York marathon, we arrived in the city on Saturday, 5 hours later than expected. Our original flight had been canceled and the airline called and left a message on our home phone while we were in the hospital having Patrick. I'm pretty sure at some point I heard and disregarded this important detail, as all other things paled in comparison to the overwhelming fatigue and surprise I was feeling at the fact that I now had three children under the age of four.
In arriving late, we knew we had to get to the expo at the Javits Center before it closed, or there would be no marathon for Jay. The New York Road Runners are very specific about this detail; if you don't pick up your packet by five on Saturday, no marathon for you.
Let me take a moment and commend my husband here. He was calm, collected, and contained all day, as we waited for a connecting flight to Atlanta(we originally had a direct flight), then waited more for a flight to New York that arrived at 3:30. At no point did he blame me for dismissing the phone call. At no point did he throw a hissy fit. At no point did he break down in complete panic at the fact that we were going to literally be getting there at the last possible moment.
I wish I were more like him. Seriously. I would have done all of these things.
Long story longer, we got there at 4:30 as they were breaking down the expo, in just enough time for Jay to retrieve his packet. He got what he needed and got out of there, just as the whole place was coming down.
This time, we were both looking forward to spending some time at the expo, and so headed over after my TNT run.
The expo is just like any other pre-race packet pickup, except that the Javits Center takes up 5 city blocks, there are 45,000 runners picking up race bags, Ryan Hall, Bart Yasso, Deena Kastor, Matt Long, and Joan Benoit Samuelson are there, among other running celebrities, and nearly every running vendor and/or energy bar/drink and/or technical gear and/or charity team has a booth there.
Like everything else relative to New York and
its marathon (minus the bathrooms and our hotel room), it's epic in scope.
Epic, too, was the surprise I felt when these two materialized out of the crowd at the expo.There had been a noticeable dearth of texts from Tommy the week prior to the race, and I chalked it up to him having a busy week at work. The night before the expo at dinner, however, Jay was tap tap tapping away on his phone, breaking one of our family rules of no talking on the phone or texting during dinner. I informed him that Tommy could wait until after our meal(and why isn't he texting me, the one who's running??) thank you very much, and you're setting a bad example for the kids, blah blah blah.
Alas. Plans had to be made, schedules coordinated.
Sidenote: If I'd known I was going to be so heavily photographed today, I wouldn't have worn a horizontally striped sweater.
At the Asics booth, they asked us to list why we were running the marathon and then filmed us holding our sign, running back and forth in front of the camera. Later they aired it in Times Square, pictured below. For the record, I did not "beat this guy." So of course I'll run another marathon.
My two best fans, sticking to their word.
Stay tuned for more pre-race coverage.