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Family Reunion in the Cape and the Providence Half

I wanted to do enough events this year to be able to get the Rock Legend heavy medal for the Rock ‘n’ Roll series but I could only do it if most of them were during the summer and winter off-season. One of the runs was on August 7, 2011, it was the inaugural Providence half marathon in Rhodes Island. I wanted to see if my mom wanted to go and it turned into a family reunion for the whole family, everyone was coming down not just immediate and extended but people we haven’t seen in years upon years.

Months and months down the road, the semesters grew harder for school and it was too much too handle so I had to drop, early in the semester, before the W mark, my biostatistics course. So, in order to stay on a reasonable track for graduation I had to take biostats in the summer which was right in the middle of going down to the family reunion. And of course the reunion was the weekend before and my mom nor I had the money for two tickets to Providence and back so I could go to the reunion, come back, and then go back for the half marathon.

So, I drove everyone to the airport after a four hour lab exam, they left for the week and I met up with them after a lecture exam the week after. I flew down that Thursday night and was there in the morning. I’m starting to get used to these 40 hour days that I’ve been doing. Everyone was pretty much gone by then, just a few people that we’ve seen over the years. They have nice beach front property in the cape (cape cod, sub-sect in Massachusetts).  The Boston airport charged too much for their internet but their Dunkin Donuts had a great croissant sandwich.

Spent some time touring, a lot of relaxing, spending some time with friends (putting faces to names that I’ve heard for a long time) and then we went to the Providence half in the morning on Sunday. It was great because it was hot all weekend and then it rained before the half, it rained during the entire time we ran, and it rained afterward. It rained when we were getting our bibs for the race just a little bit so we tried to cover ourselves and when we were putting on our bibs and RFID tags. We even put safety pins on our tags because we were scared they would fall off during the race. It poured the entire time we were waiting to take off in the race.

My little cousin Rebecca ran/walk it with us and she did a great job especially for her first half, in tennis shoes, in the pouring rain. I’m not sure if I would have been excited about it my first time in the rain especially at that age. She wasn’t at first and it took her a minute to do the first couple of miles but she did really well afterward. It took her 38 minutes to do the first two miles and she picked it up to 15 min miles and then 14 min miles. By the time we hit the third or fourth mile our shirts were soaked, our pants were soaked, our shoes were a pool of water, they must have weighed 15 lbs heavier than they were dry.

After the 8th or 9th mile I had to run ahead because the sag bus was trailing us by a few hundred yards back so I ran ahead to make sure that I beat the time we needed to get the finishers medal and continue the heavy medal series. Truth is, my mom and I should have just stayed with her because she finished with just enough time to get a medal and everything so we would have been fine. I beat her by 10-15 minutes. My mom was on the lower end, 10-12 minutes, roughly. I met up with an OR nurse for the last three miles and she said she probably wouldn’t do Providence again, I wonder why? But after this one she wasn’t going to do any for a while because it was just a tough race to beat (finish). She was nice though, she was visiting her grand kids, the whole nine yards, lives in California.

On the way home we went through the Cheesecake factory to get to the parking lot, not sure if they appreciated when runners going through their restaurant. The parking lot was huge for the run, I wouldn’t doubt they accommodated most of the runners with that one parking lot (I think it was Sears). Sat on the rental car seats, soaked them. Went back to the hotel with my little cousin saying she would never do one again. After we showered and warmed up she let out a little murmur of, let’s do one again. I think she’ll enjoy local runs better in sunny ville California with running shoes.

All in all the run was pretty great. The rain yeah, it could have been better but then again with the humidity of the East coast and how hot it could have really been, the rain was a cool alternative. It wasn’t all that cold, it only was a little cold near the end most likely from our immune systems taking a beating. And of course, it’s always something to talk about. “You’re telling me you paid all that money to go run for four hours in the rain?” It was a great experience to hvae, rain or shine. 

[What’s funny though is if you go on the RnR Providence home page, you notice that the runners are happy and cheering to the finish and it appears sunny. But, if you look at it, you can see that it’s raining and at the very least overcast, because I’m sure there idea is who wants to register for a run in the rain? At that point, I can just run for free haha.]

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