Saturday, August 13, 2016

At a road race headquarters, but not running

Image designed by local artist for T-shirts
Yesterday I left home at 4 p.m. for Shelburne Falls to volunteer handing out T-shirts for today's  Bridge of Flowers 10-K Classic and 3-K Charity Race   I returned home at 9, wilted from standing in the heat but glad that I did my part to support The Cancer Connection, one of the beneficiaries of the race and a big help to me and to many. I briefly entertained feeling sorry that I wasn't running, but since I never wanted to run the hills in the heat anyway, I gave that up and had a good time.

I talked to some nice people and wished the runners well. I also got a spaghetti dinner, ice cream and....drumroll...another T-shirt to add to my collection. While eating dinner, I sat next to a 75-year-old Senior Olympian who has run 17 marathons. She said that when she turned 60, she vowed to run 60 races that year. Instead, she ran 63, including a marathon. After a car accident at age 50, her doctor told her that she would never run again, but she proved him wrong. Hmmmmm, I thought, a possible story. I gave her my card and took her number in case I am able to successfully pitch a story about her.

It was a rare day when I didn't get any exercise. I sat at my dining room table writing and got so in a zone that before I knew it, it was time to leave. I got some exercise lifting boxes of T-shirts at Buckland Shelburne Elementary School so that was my weight-lifting for the day.

For the first time in a long while, bad weather canceled our Wednesday tennis clinic. I stopped by the Canoe Club to see if anyone was there and chatted for a while with George, who was talking to Ben Marcus of Marcus Printing. I told him to say hello to his wife, Ann, who I know through league tennis. We also talked about the crazy good old days at the Transcript-Telegram. I told him the story of how Jon Klarfeld, my BU professor, had sent me there before my masters graduation and how I went to work there and fell in love with a certain person's editing. George thought that was funny and I said that there were actually other things.

Due to playing so much tennis, I felt like I needed a shoulder opener. I left the Canoe Club on time to get to Susie's yoga class at the Hampshire Y and was happy to find out that's just what she was doing.

During another part of the class she said we were going to pair off in threes to work on our down dogs with assists. One person would do the pose while one put a belt around that person's hips and pulled back and the other person kneeled in front to press the down the hands of the person doing the pose.

I thought she read my mind when she said, "Don't freak out if you have arthritis in your hands. You can do a modification."

When she came over to show me how I could do it resting on my forearms (dolphin), I said I thought I was the only one in the class with that problem. My right hand can lie almost flat but my left makes a little claw. Also, I have limited flexibility in my wrists. She said that actually many people have it. The friends who had the same major "issues" as I do are all gone, so I don't know why but I was glad to know there are people who have a similar minor one.

The day before, we only had two for our Tuesday group. So Chris and I played singles. At first my racquet kept thinking I was playing doubles because I hit winners...for a doubles game. I lost 6-2. But then I remembered how to play singles and won 6-2. At 2-2 in the third set (in the heat) we agreed we were tired and would stop. We played one more game and due to a little short slice I won, but we were so evenly matched it was basically a tie.

I was glad to see I could still play singles. When I got home I threw together a snack of whatever was around: watermelon, cottage and a piece of Evelyn's coffee cake. (To be honest, the coffee cake wasn't really around. As tired as I was I went to Breezy Acres before I went home.)

Afterwards, I sat down on the couch next to Maddie, put my hand on her back, and fell asleep sitting up.

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