A few weeks back I got an email from MarathonTours that promoted “the second inaugural Madagascar Marathon.” I’ve had some issues with MarathonTours, particularly with regards to the real inaugural Madagascar Marathon that I ran this year. So I was already predisposed to have issues with ANYTHING they sent out regarding it. But for the record — that’s not how language works, MT. The only way that one could parse that pitch is to argue that it’s the FIRST time for the SECOND annual marathon. But that’s splitting hairs in such a way that even Figaro in that famed Sevillian Cosmetology tale would take umbrage at.
All of this is prelude to explain that 2017 marked the SECOND running of the Merrie Mile on Kalakaua Avenue in Waikiki, Honolulu. Mom did the inaugural (ya know, the FIRST time an event is held) and was back as a LEGACY racer for this year’s event. I was worried about her — her knee has been playing up quite a bit and she’s been struggling. As a guy coming back from a series of butt-kicking injuries, well, I was even more cognizant of the pitfalls and problems that might waylay our plans.
But mom was determined. We were up before dawn and walked down to the start line. Honestly, that was close to a half mile from our hotel and she handled that with aplomb, giving me greater confidence.
We bumped into some fellow runners from world wide adventures — the Kiwi duo of Rebecca and Ian. Actually, they spotted me amidst the supposed 20,000 participants of the Merrie Mile which just goes to show what a small world it can be sometimes.
And just like last year, a guy dressed in an inflatable dinosaur costume was milling about, stretching out the calves and tail whilst limbering up his tiny CeeLo Green-ian arms. He’s a bit of a celebrity to be honest — people were lined up trying to get photos. We had some good ones from last year already so we opted to let others get their dino-moment.
I’ve grown obsessed with the animated GIFs possible using the iPhone’s Live Motion Photo option do here’s one I put together and entitled, “Dance, Dino! Dance!”
As for the race itself, I’m super proud of Mom. She made it the whole way without stopping once. She powered through, heading up the 0.5 miles to the 180 degree turnaround and then right back down to the Honolulu Zoo.
I know her knee was bothering her quite a bit but on the plus side it didn’t seem to hurt any more than usual. While I don’t like this chronic pain business, she “gutted it out,” “got ‘er done,” and proved just how tough she is.
It was, in a word, inspiring.
She could’ve skipped it. We could’ve dropped out anytime. We could’ve stopped and rested too. In any of those instances I still would have been proud of Mom for making the effort.
But she didn’t quit. She persisted. She endured.
Despite hardships and obstacles and annoyances, she finished what she started, achieved what she set out to do.
There’s an old I-just-made-this-up Hawaiian saying: ʻAʻole e hāʻule loa ka pāmele mai ka lāʻau aku.
According to google translate, this should mean, “The pineapple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”
I sincerely hope that’s the case because if I can be half as brave and strong as my Mom, not only in races but in life itself, I can do just about anything.
Go, Mom, go! I’m so proud of you!