No, I did NOT run a 5K. Our son, Frank (age 21), did. Mason and I went with him and we had a wonderful time! I’ve never been to one and I somehow envisioned a couple hundred runners racing down a few downtown streets. I pictured myself sitting at the finish line to get Frank’s picture as he broke through a yellow ribbon. I was SO wrong!!
When we got to the location, we had to park at a mall that’s under construction and then we had to walk about 5K to get to the 5K. I didn’t read that in the advertising literature and I definitely wore the WRONG sandals! I lost my sweater somewhere along the way, too. Mason was a trouper, and kept up just fine. We passed over a bridge where we could see the start of the race and, oh my goodness, there were THOUSANDS of people! It was like a busy, colorful, moving blob far into the distance. My jaw dropped. I had NO IDEA these races were so popular!
We eventually arrived at the big white tent and Frank signed in. I had originally planned to wait for Frank at the finish line. He had on a flourescent orange tank top that would be easy to spot. But, when Frank emerged from the tent, he had on the white Run or Dye t-shirt that everyone else had, dashing my hopes of a photo finish. NO WAY was I going to be able to spot him in the crowd.
He met up with his friend, Bree, and they moved toward the starting line after we agreed on a rendezvous spot for later. They were releasing 500 to 700 runners at a time so I knew it would take awhile. There was a nice, very long lake right next to us with lots of picnic tables and colorful umbrellas. Mason and I walked over, sat next to a woman and her toddler, and made conversation. Mason later took off his shoes, rolled up his pants, and walked down to the water to make more new friends (he’s not shy at all).
It was a beautiful day – sunny and breezy. I actually got a bit chilly, sitting there in my shorts, and missed my sweater. Putting Mason’s tiny pullover on my bare legs didn’t really help.
A few minutes later, I saw some people running toward the water so I stood to see what all the excitement was about. There were several boats coming our way. It was a Florida Scholastic Rowing Association meet. Wow! A real rowing race! I’d only seen them in movies, usually those based in New England. I called to Mason so he could watch, too. It was very exciting and our table was right next to the finish line for the boat races. About half an hour later, another group came by, and then another, and another. There were men’s and women’s teams. What a treat!
This Week’s Masonism:
Grampa was here last week and he was on the comfy recliner one evening with Mason curled up by his side. It was chilly outside so I asked him, “Do you need a blanket, Grampa?”
Mason said, “I already gave him one.”
I replied, “That was so sweet, Mason!”
Mason smiled, and said, “I just like him so much.”
Angela Hoy lives in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is the publisher of WritersWeekly.com, the President and CEO of BookLocker.com and AbuzzPress, and the author of 24 books.
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Angela is the creator of the Original 24-Hour Short Story Contest!