Sunday – Packet Day!

7 05 2010

(Journal 6)  There is something  just indecent about going to an expo on a rainy Sunday!  I know I do the Bolder Boulder on a Monday and isn’t the Virginia Beach race then too? I digress!

Steve flew in at some indecent hour of the morning.  We were texting while he was bored on BART and in the San Francisco Airport waiting for his over-nighter flight.  I would get a message and relay it to Mike. 

Mike is a night owl.  He drinks coffee until he goes to sleep. Fortunately we both like to gaze at the television.  With the exception of medical shows and inane yelling at one another, I am usually open to anything on TV. Ok – no porn … you have to pay for that anyway! Ha!  Tonight was poker.  My cousin Chris was in one of those television poker things and he does something to do with betting now.  I was just tired enough not to be able to figure out why people were doing what they were doing, but whatever!

I had to make sure when I was walking around in the morning to not trip over Mike’s air thingie.  That would just be a bad thing.  His machine is surprisingly quiet.  It sounds like an air conditioner.  This is going to be good.  I got up early and shot the photo pointing where Steve was probably at that moment.  I did toodle down to their nice lobby in my favorite Thumper sleep pants for the morning paper.  She couldn’t find it.  Sigh.

Since Mike knew where we were going, I just took to toodling about.  We both wanted to make sure Steve got “home” safely and if his room wasn’t ready, he was going to be bullied into staying in our room until his was ready.  He’s preloading himself with steroids and I know he hates the stuff.  I hate the idea of two of my favorite people keeping the pharmaceutical industry going, but these guys are pretty special and they’re not done living … so send in the meds!

Have I written how much I love my plug-in water kettle and French Press? By the end of the weekend, I’ll probably have Mike hooked too! 

Drizzly, yucky, gross!  Steve gave me a wonderful race hat – the black Boston Marathon cap! Normally I don’t wear race specific hats.  I have my finisher’s cap for the Shamrock 1/2 and when they tried to give me one for the full, I wouldn’t accept it!  I also am a bit superstitious about wearing/purchasing finisher gear before I finish the race.  Call me silly, but I’ve only done it one time – my first Goofy – and I damn near killed myself to finish it!

My cousin Robin, some friends of hers stranded in the US because they can’t get home to England due to the Icelandic volcano spewing ash into the sky, Mike and I are probably going to have lunch wherever it is that Robin lives.  It is an open invitation for Mike since he had kind of a lousy flight and has to mind his air.  He’s also got to get the cart ready.  He knows I won’t take offence.  Steve is invited also, but he’s on bed-rest.

Just as we were leaving, I noticed the removable nose pad for my new race glasses was missing.  The tiny screw fell out!  We had to find a Lenscrafter’s near the expo.  Here’s to modern technology.  Steve found one when he was using the wi-fi and texted it to me.  Rock on!  Turns out the Lenscrafters was just a smidge past the expo by the finish line.  Unfortuantely, it was closed when we first got there.  Expo first then!

Not to sound too jaded, but an expo is an expo.  Mike isn’t one for crowds, the weather is misting, and he has his air in a small cart with pretty lousy wheels.  He’s a tall guy and I would think they would make wheelies that work better.  Maybe they think “sick” people aren’t that ambulatory!
We had to take a shuttle to the subway then switch lines then walk.  Not terrible.  Predictably, the subway was jam packed with people not exactly sure where they were going, but we were a herd. Talked with Mom while walking.  She initially thought we were racing.  A Monday race messes with her too. 
Last time I was in Boston, I was here for a touristy day with my Dad when I was about 15.  We were going to New Hampshire to visit his parents then back down to New York to visit with Aunt Nina, Chris, James, & Lorenzo. I find it ironic that I am there as a guide for two lung challenged athletes because I was competing in four sports and had double pneumonia at the time.  Kind of interesting to note that I’d given up on my dream of doing the Boston Marathon by that time!
First things first.  Mike had to get us checked in.  He went directly to the Disabled Athletes section.  I lagged behind a bit absorbing.  I’m not sure how real it all felt.  I didn’t have to figure out where to line up for my number, remember paperwork or anything.  I was just following.  I saw this sign at the top of a pillar.  Mike didn’t know it was there until I showed him the photo.  

I promise to do my best to get my guys finished happy and healthy … and not destroy myself in the process!

It was a bit of a zoo.  Mike is easy to find with his heavy jacket and toting air.  His being tall doesn’t hurt either!  He picked up front bibs for us and I grabbed pins.  We then went over to pick up “goody” bags.  The nice thing about the number of athletes that couldn’t make it from Europe is that there wasn’t a problem for Mike to pick up bags for myself, and the Air Crew: Pete, Brett, & Tom.  Completely unexpected and the shirt is a very nice tech shirt.  I nearly cried!
We pulled over to the side to lighten up the bags a bit. There’s a ton of advertising in them and when you’re carrying not only your own but the bags of 4 teammates (we had Steve’s too) weight management is a good idea.  I brought my black shoulder bag so I popped Mike’s and Steve’s race numbers and packets in there for safekeeping. 
The expo was in two rooms.  It is hard for Mike to negotiate that little wonky oxygen bag/tank thing and people really don’t pay close attention to where they’re going.  I would have to say there are about the same number of booths as Disney, but far less walking space between them.  I wasn’t all that impressed until we got into the second room.  I was on a mission: My Garmin 305 has been acting up and Mike wanted me to try out the Mizuno’s he’s been wearing – the Musha.  I figured if I could try the three pairs of Mizuno’s they have for racing flats, it would be a good trip.  It is hard to get my size in Denver – 10.5 –> 11 men’s.
I dropped my watch off with the Garmin folks and we went to the Mizuno booth.  I fell IN LOVE with 3.8 ounce Wave Universe 3’s. They would be a one use shoe with how heavy I am on them, but geee whiz bang!  If I was sponsored and they handed them to me … They didn’t have the 7.5 oz Wave Ronins in my size.  Sigh.  I did try the comparatively heavier (7.8 oz) Wave Mushas and I liked them.  I also found I’m a 10.5 not 11!  I’m looking for a pair of training shoes because I’m walking right through my Brooks T-6’s.  My 6.1 oz cuties are wonderful, but I want to race in them … until I can get an unlimited supply of Wave Universes (giggle).  The only concern I have about the Mizunos is airflow.  That’s for another blog post.
Mike and I had to drop off my glasses, so it was a potty stop.  We were strange on time.  He had a lot of things to get done.  When I went in to the ladies’ my cousin Robin called the minute I finally got a stall! 
We got out of the expo and Mike needed a coffee and I needed glasses repair.  The frustrating thing was I’m so used to being spoiled rotten by Nansi C. at Park Meadows Mall Lenscrafters that I was surprised when they said their tech wasn’t in and I’d have to leave my specs.  Oh my … day before the race and I’d risked it by not bringing my back up pair (I can see Nansi doing a happy dance here!).
Mike wasn’t going to hang around.  All good, but he had things to get done.  I know the feeling.  We went our separate ways.  I went up to Coolidge Corner by T-Train and he went up to Team Wheezy HQ in the other direction.  My train was chock full of Red Sox fans since there was a game that day.  Wheee!!!
I’ll write more about my adventure with my cousin Robin when she posts her photos!



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