Today was the Boston Marathon. I only knew one person running and wasn’t really paying too much attention. It is such a great event and I pretty much knew that my friend’s wife would do just fine. Reason being is that you have to qualify and the times are pretty fast so most people are really good runners.
Then, as I was headed out of the office, Ben says “Espe there were 2 explosions at the finish line”. My heart stopped. I quickly went on line to see what was going on. They kept showing the same images and videos over and over again. I also emailed my friend to see if his wife made it and was ok. Then I texted another friend who knew several people in the race. After a little while I got confirmation that all of them were ok.
I then went home and turned on the TV. I could not get myself to stop watching. It was so shocking. I felt sadness. I have been a spectator at that race and was at the finish line like everyone else. The experience of this race is like no other. It is such a celebration. You yell and cheer for everyone and you can feel the runners appreciation. That did not happen yesterday. Instead people were killed and injured. The runners coming in at that time were shocked. I can not imagine finishing like that. Then there were the runners who were diverted. I can not imagine what they were thinking especially if they had people waiting for them.
I then got on Facebook and saw how so many people were sending prayers, sharing stories, asking others if they had loved ones there and feeling the same way that I was. Runners and non runners alike. It was therapeutic. That is the magic of Facebook. I also received many phone calls and messages from people asking if I was there or if I had friends there. I heard from one lady that I haven’t seen in 10 years. Her message was short but you could feel the love. It said “Espe – Please tell us you were not running in the Boston Marathon! Hope you are well. Jim and Linda”. I had a lot of messages like that. I guess people realize that once you are a runner you will always be a runner.
What I learned today is how special the running world is. I will have to say that I was inspired by the running community today. It’s incidents like this that remind me how connected we all are. Sometimes I do forget. But I was most impressed by the non runners. The concern they showed for my running friends and for me brought me to tears. I suppose they get our spirit and our connection as well. Thank you and Love you guys.