Monday, May 26, 2008

A race and a parade

I ran the first 5k of the year this morning. It was a memorial day race. They gave out really nice technical shirts with a nice little logo on the front. They also gave out water belts with water bottle that sayd GO ARMY on them. And the hard plastic bandaid dispensers with bandaids. These hold about 4 or 5 bandaids and are excellent for carrying during a race or a run - completely water proof and at the ready. Unless you have a big honkin' blister and then there aren't enough bandaids.

And what race is complete without the giveaway samples of Aquafor. I love Aquafor. I immediately set about filling the water bottle up with a handful or two. Then I took Cher's water bottle and right as I was starting to fill that, I saw small empty boxes from the sample calcium they gave away, so I gave the water bottle back to Cher and proceeded to fill that small box. I ended up with about 50 of those sample tubes. Did I mention that I love Aquafor?

Anyway, I ran with Cher's Dad and the Transplant Guy (aka Neal). Hmmm... actually, I started out with Cher's Dad, and ended up finishing by myself a minute or two behind them. Then I went back to run Neal in. I met Neal's wife, and Ryan, the Transplantor.

Ryan is really quiet and seemed to be doing quite well. Cher says that Ryan and Neal have known each other since about grade school. Wow. What kinda testament to a friendship is it when one person gives one of his kidneys to another? Wow.

And Michelle (aka Transplant Guy's wife) is super sweet. And what kinda testament is it to a love so strong that it lasts through years and years of ill health and the toll that that can have on the human spirit, never mind a marriage. Wow.

Cher's Dad is a military guy. I love him. I love him a lot. I look at him and I see the years of service. I thanked him for all he did in his years of service. He sort of brushed it off. As all good military men do. He did excellent. He is thinking of doing Bataan next year. I am thinking that might be the year for me to go, too!

After the race, we rode up to see Milt in the Dublin Memorial Day Parade. He looked might dapper and held a rifle. It was a small parade but it will more filled with pride than one of those big ones you see on TV during Thanksgiving with all those balloons the size of houses. Seriously.

And did I mention that Milt looked might fine and dapper in his outfit? It looked like 10 years had melted off him. He loved that we were there, I think. His face lit up when he saw us. Anyway...

We marched with the parade and ended up in a small area in the back of a small cemetary. There were prayers and speeches, the raising of the Flag, a 21 gun salute and taps. The echo taps. Nothing brings tears to my eyes more than taps and these were just excellent. The main melody up close, with a far away distant echo of the same, as if calling to some unknown and unseen brethren, in the distance. The loneliness of that distance. I can only imagine that was how it must have been in the war, as you stand watch or guard or whatever they all do to make sure that we have peace and freedom for all.

There was not a dry eye in the place when it was all said and done.

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