Saturday, October 3, 2009

Final Packing day - Goodbye Gang!

Saturday - Oct 3 -
Final Packing Day - and what a week it's been!

I stopped near the end of Lake Wilcox the other day. I was running around town looking after last minute stuff and was heading over to see Nadia for a few minutes. I stopped the car at the east end of the lake, near where we always got into the water.
I thought back to the first swim in that lake. From the dock, out to the first buoy and back again. Maybe 200 meters. I'd watched some other folks who got in after me and had swam to the far end and back. I was totally amazed, unable to imagine ever being able to swim that 1k lake. I thought of all the solo swims, before the sun came up. Swims with different folks, small groups, big groups, folks who dropped out for of group, folks who went on to decide that Lake Wilcox is a cesspool and they'd never get in again.
I thought back to the first swim at NTT. How scared I was to walk into a group of real athletes, not being able to swim. I remembered walking into the Running Room, meeting Henri and talking about how I'd signed up for an Ironman. She asked me about how I did in each sport, and her look back at me when I explained my skill level (or lack thereof!). I remembered swimming with Steve B one morning. The fog rolled in behind us as we swam to the far end of the lake. We got lost on the way back. God only knows how many circles we swam in before we came up on the south shore (instead of the east end!)
The 4 years that I "Tri'd", in some ways went by in a flash, and in some ways seem to have gone on forever.
The best part? no question here! The folks I met and encouraged me along the way. I don't want to name names for two reasons. 1. I'll miss someone or 2. I'll list them all and the internet will run out of space!
The 'gang' is a big group. From NTT to NYAC, the Ironman gang, the running gang, the weekends from Sharon bike gang, the Timberlane gang, Lake Placid and Wisconsin. The winter running gang. My condo buddies from a couple of Lake Placid trips this year. Amazing folks, all of them just a little nuts, but all of them, I'm proud to know, and honored to have been included with.
Lynne and I loaded the car this morning with everything we're taking along with us on this trip. Then we unloaded the car, and packed in everything that wouldn't fit, and I drove it up the the storage joint. I had to stop in town (Aurora) to pick up something and thought of dropping in to see Willem and Bryan on my way home again. I feel like those two guys were my brothers over the last year as we all trained for LP. I HATE "goodbye's" so I decided not to. I'm a lot better with simple "see you later's" or just disappearing from site.
I did drive a few of our biking and running routes. They didn't seem like such a big deal just prior to Ironman. Today, they felt like amazingly long distances even to drive in the car, let alone to run or bike. I think we loose touch with what it is we actually do out there.
Anyway . . . . . I got all leaky faced thinking about all the close friends, friends, acquaintances and folks I know to say hi, or folks I trained with, but don't see anymore for one reason or another.
I've been pretty excited about the adventure ahead of us and hadn't thought much about the folks we're leaving behind. Most of the folks are training folks only because this sport is so absorbing there was not much room for anything else.
Lynne and i have been able to get together with our non-trainng friends and family over the last couple of months as well. It's been great. The only problem of late is that we've been out for lunch and dinner so many times, particularly in the last couple of weeks, were both gaining weight like crazy and quickly turning into alcoholics!
So - tomorrow we're off. The plan is to be in Calgary next weekend, Victoria the following weekend, then down the Pacific Coast Highway to San Fransisco, across to Sedona, down to Green Valley and then get our butts through Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and then, on to Boquete Panama.
We'll write everyday and post ever day we have Internet access.
Oh yea, while my sensitive feminine side is still showing. To all of 'The Gang' - "Thanks, you guys ROCK!"


  1. dearest lynne and greg.....hello dear friends....woke up this morning and the very first thought i had was "they're gone"....we wish you health, happiness, peace and glattbergs

  2. Greg, of all the people you were thanking, you definately shouldn't forget yourself from going from newbie into a driving force behind a lot of races, training, get togethers, and, last but not least, my tattoo. And having the balls to sign up an Ironman without ANY athletic background is still, and will be for a long time, talked about. Hang in there, you'll hear from me....more that you might like..... Willem


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