Are you tired of this chronicle yet? It's mirroring the marathon itself in the time it's taking me to get it out there.
I just googled "Willis Avenue Bridge" to get a visual of the 4th bridge I went up and over, this time from Manhattan to the Bronx.
I don't remember it at all.
Or maybe I do? But only after seeing the picture. It's a little bit like your earliest memory-do you remember it because you remember the sounds, smells, and feelings surrounding it? Or do you remember it because you've seen a picture of yourself in it, heard about it, and have therefore created the memory?
For example, will they remember the sound of the xylophone, the kindness of the street performer, the smell of the air in Central Park? Or will they only be reminded, vaguely, when they see this picture years down the road?
That's kind of how I feel about the Bronx; I was there for less than a mile. I remember loud music, crossing the 20 mile marker, turning, turning again, seeing myself run on a huge screen scaffolded over the street, and being a part of a particular fluidity, an energy that seemed to be moving the crowd forward, regardless of pain, motive, or desire. The race was just happening to me at this point.
I tried to reach into my metaphorical race bag, but only fragments of thought were coming to the surface. I knew that just over the next bridge was the final 5 mile stretch to Manhattan, to Central Park, to a finish line that seemed both near and ridiculously, heinously far away.