We got up this morning at 3:00. I was going to get up at 3:30 but was too keyed up. Once Art got up, I couldn't stay abed.
I started collecting the things we would need for the day. My brother, Dennis arrived 15 minutes early to drive us to Honolulu. I think we were all keyed up. Art had his clothes ready; racing bib pinned to his shirt and racing chip tied to his shoe so we'd be able to monitor his progress on line.
My mom was up early also to say good-bye to her favorite son-in-law. It was about 4:15 AM.
Dennis and I dropped Art off to walk a distance to the starting point. We then waited for the race to start at 5:00. It looked deserted. I wondered if we were at the right place.
Then came the wheelchair racers flanked by bicycle chaperons to insure safety.
The elite (fastest) runners went by in a jiffy and then the 23,000 other runners either ran or walked by us as we clapped for them.
Do you have any idea how long it takes for 23,000 people to run or walk by you? A long time. I started looking around at the Christmas decorations across the street.
And then... good grief! There he was! Dennis and I were barely prepared to snap Art's photo.
We followed the long procession on Kalaniana'ole Highway as the sun began to rise.
A tiger costume would have helped us pick him out. I imagine it would be TOO hot for that.
This fellow was the only guy running in a SUIT!
How would Art look with bunny ears?
We finally gave up and went across the street and waited there. And suddenly, there he was! I could breathe again. We'd seen an ambulance parked along the street helping a runner. It was unnerving.
Dennis thought he looked awfully good since this was now the 19 mile mark for him. OK, I thought. This is respectable. He can stop and rest. But no... he kept right on going...
...right past the First Aid Station. He did learn the routine of drinking the Gatorade that was offered.... then the water.... then to sponge water on himself. The road was strewn with cups and sponges.
Dennis and I drove about a half mile down the road to Wailupe, parked and walked across the street and before we even managed to point our cameras straight, there Art was still looking OK. He told us later that this is when he felt strength ebbing. It was about the 20 mile mark.
Dennis and I then went off to find a computer to see where Art was. We found he was still doing well so we went to the Finish Line area. And THERE he was going across! I could hardly believe it!
Every runner received a shell lei as they crossed the finish shelter.
He looked mighty happy.
We walked to the booth to pick up his Finisher t-shirt.
We'd parked a distance away so Art had to add another mile or so (to the 26.2 miles he'd already run) to walk to the car.
As we were walking to the car, Tif and Jon called to congratulate their dad from Illinois and New Mexico. They had been following his progress on line.