The dawn broke gray and murky. As usual I was way wide awake before my alarm rang. Time: 3:50 A.M.I stretched and yawned and tried to figure out why I am awake at this ungodly hour. Right! Today, July 13, is my 5 K run! I got up and checked on dentist. She was to run too. By 4:50 A.M. the dentist and I were traveling along Coastal Road. At 5:15 A.M. we were at The Fort. The race was due to start at 6:00 A.M. I was surprised by the number of people who were to run. There were thousands! – young, old, fit, fat, tall, short. The run was sponsored by De La Salle and you can just imagine the number of student runners (not real runners) all gearing up for the race. There were three categories: 3K, 5K and 16 K. Dentist and I chose the 5K race.
Jerome, Dentist, Jay, Moi, JP
By the time my race kicked off, it was drizzling. At the 2K mark, I was dripping wet with three kinds of liquid – sweat, rain and tears. The rain was no longer a drizzle, it was a soaker! Tears –metaphorically- more of tears of frustration-were onthe verge of falling. I was irritated by the seemingly grating demeanor of some runners. Others were hugging the left side of the street while they talk, walk and giggle their way to the finish line. Some were throwing empty mineral bottles on sidewalks. Still there were those who cut across corners in the hope of shortening their distance.
After crossing the finish line
I trudged on, scanning the sea of faces for the dentist. I can’t find her. At the 3 K mark (or so I thought) the 5 k runners pushed on straight ahead only to be told that we made a wrong turn. Great! The organizers were morons who forgot to mark the race’s route! The morons did not even have the basic knowledge to post their people at crucial turns. Later, I found out that the organizers were actually experienced runners who didn't have the brains to organize such events.
The last 2Kof the 5K run was uphill. My stride was nil until a certified grandma of about 65+ jogged passed me! Whadda!! The lola was overtaking me! Ego pricked, I was pushed jogging to prevent granny from overtaking me. My bad! The uphill jog was compensated by the downhill run. I reached the finish line and was surprised that there were no official timers at the finish line. Some guy just took a stub out of my number and that was it. I then saw the dentist, two nephews and a grand nephew waiting for me a few meters from the line. They finished way ahead of me. As we were talking they just realized that they actually did not run the whole race because they took the wrong route. Kudos to the organizers! Half of the 5 K runners made the wrong run and the organizers never found that out. The three top finishers were all from the wrong-short-route pack.
Jay and I discussing the mis-organized event
Dentist, Jay, Me and JP
Dentist was pissed that she did not actually run 5K. My two nephews – avid, experienced runners- were just laughing it off. I was elated. Unprepared that I was, I still finished the race. Now, I am priming for my next race in October. Ummmm…. 10K perhaps?