Monday, February 16, 2009

Marathon mania.

Are all cities like this? Marathons seemingly every other week thwarting your driving plans?

I have no problem with runners. Some of my best friends are runners. My parents both enjoy running. My brother ran cross-country in high school and I believe my sister-in-law likes to run, too. I like running down the hall chasing babies, but that's about it. It hurts me and frankly, bores me. Sorry, runners!

Yesterday was a comedy, nay, melodrama of marathon proportions. We left the house especially early to get to church on time (for once). I even put on some nice churchy clothes whereas I usually wear jeans. We got stuck behind the marathon, which we expected, but not to the extent that occurred. We pulled up behind a white S.U.V. at 9:15 and sat, sat, sat. 9:20 came. 9:30 came. 9:40 came. I began to go a bit nuts. LB started to cry. I started to cry (well, I wanted to cry).

We searched for something to talk about other than our frustrations about being stuck stuck stuck. We talked more about being stuck.

"Seriously," I said, "I need to talk about something else." We talked about the marathon some more.

People were getting out of there cars because it was soon obvious we were not going anywhere in the next undetermined about of time. I saw an older gentleman talking to someone in a car. "Hey, that looks like Jim, doesn't it?" (Our neighbor who fell out of the tree a few Christmases ago.) It sure enough was Jim. I sprung forth from the car and waved. "Jim!" We walked toward each other and whined a little, joking about getting out the coffee-maker and selling some joe on the street. Then over from another car came Paula, another neighbor who I had never met. "I'm Paula 'cuz I'm talla," she said. But I was in my heels for once so that wasn't really true. I stood and talked to my neighbors for awhile. Neither attend our church, so it was quite a coincidence to be stuck with them at Shoal Creek and 45th Street.

I went back to the car and found LB screaming. So I took him out to give him a break from the car and to go see how many runners were still coming. (Answer: a lot.) The police officer in charge had not let a single car through in our direction for 30 minutes by that point. This was 13 miles into the marathon and 2.5 hours after it started. As we walked to the street, I heard a voice from the window of another car saying, "Amy!" It was Denise - one of the directors of our Sunday School department. Her husband S.L. was "driving" the bus in front of her. We then chatted for a few minutes. I walked by and waved to S.L. in the bus. Their son continued to get out of the car, into the bus, then out of the bus, into the car, and so on.

I decided to go back to Randy and report what I had learned. S.L. in the bus, Denise behind him, Jim behind Denise, Paula behind Jim, Krissy (another church friend) behind Jim, and then us. Five cars worth of people in front of us, all of whom I knew. Madness, I tell you!

I got back to the car just as the officer finally let S.L. and the bus through the running traffic. But I was standing there by the car with the baby. I stuck him in is seat and dove in after him. I got in the way-back and strapped him in with his Lightening McQueen in one hand and Sally in the other. BB and Randy were eating animal crackers. I usually keep a big bear-shaped jar of them in the car. "[BB] said "Crackers, please?" very nicely, "" said Randy. And off we drove.

Has this ever happened to you? I doubt it!

1 comment:

Nancy said...

DEar Amy,
When we were living in Europe with three children under 4 3/4s we did not have a lot of marathons but we were frequently stopped for long lines to determine whether we were harboring terrorists or weapons. The would meticulously search each of our cars and all the contents there in. I loved watching them decide whether they had to search the dirty diaper rolled up in the back along with the empty box drinks etc. Luckily I usually found this humorous. By the time they would get to us the children had usually "melted down" making a great scene.
Aunt Nancy