24 April 2009

Boston Pictures – Part 1

Here they come! The promised Boston pictures! Sorry I kept you waiting, but I had popped out of town for a few days of R & R on Cape Cod. The hotel wireless was a bit slow and it would have been painful to post them from there.

A blog isn’t the ideal way to post lots of pictures, but that’s what I’ve got to work with. This is only the first batch! I’ll post them in several postings over the next few days.

These posted pictures are reduced resolution. Please email me at secondlap@comcast.net and identify the pictures you’d like by their number, and I will be happy to send you the full resolution versions! Don’t be shy, feel free to ask for as many as you’d like. And thanks for having so much fun with this, which made the race so much fun for me!

First, let me warn you, there’s a bunch of general shots before I get to the individual portraits, but for those of you who didn’t bring a camera, you might like these to remember the experience.

To see my article on the race itself, follow this link.

And here we go!

EXPO-01: Let’s start with the Expo, where this lovely volunteer stood for hours handing out numbers, including mine. Thank you!

EXPO-02: And she was kind enough to take a shot of me and my daughter. Thank you, again!

EXPO-03: The line of volunteers handing out numbers. The size of this undertaking is staggering. These people all deserve great thanks.

EXPO-04: And then on to the shirt table, more selfless volunteers.

EXPO-05: Including this smiling lady and – I presume – her helpful daughters, manning the table with the weenie-little-runner sized shirts that fit me. Thanks again (notice a pattern here?)!

EXPO-06: Inside the expo, my daughter poses by the Addidas wall which was subsequently moved to the Athlete’s village.

EXPO-07: And to finish the event, I didn’t take many pictures at the expo, but along the west wall of the Hynes, pretty much hidden behind the massive Addidas booth were several tables that seemed rather lonely due to their obscure position. I figured they deserved a shot, and a thanks for supporting their good cause.

BM-002: And now on to race day. Waiting for my friend John to arrive for our ride to Hopkinton, it was an eerie, foggy morning, worthy of recording.

BM-005: The shuttle busses await in the fog at the Hopkinton State Park parking area.

BM-006: My friend, running companion, and ride for the morning, John Tanner juggles his baggage heading to the shuttle busses.

BM-007: The volunteers are everywhere, by the billions, and they all smile and they’re all helpful and they all deserve even more thanks. This gentleman directs us to the shuttle bus.

BM-008: On the bus, this lady tells us she’s a volunteer Ambassador. We ask, “What does an Ambassador do?” She tells us she answers questions. I quickly ask her the population of Hopkinton, and she replies in a flash with an answer that might be right, might be wrong, but is delivered with such confidence that there’s no question she’s Ambassador material!

BM-009: Most people catch the shuttle from Boston, or park in the EMC lots. Those people get a bus directly to the Athlete’s Village. We who park at Hopkinton State Park (because it’s close to our home, two towns to the north) get a bus only to the edge of downtown Hopkinton, and have to walk to the Village. This affords some interesting sights, like the row of port-a-johns behind Colella’s Market before they’re crowded with runners. It’s an impressive sight, and yet, we all know, never enough.

BM-010: The long walk uphill to the Athlete’s Village from downtown Hopkinton.

BM-011: Approaching the Athlete’s Village, greeted with the sight of the big tent, and… more port-a-johns. They’re everywhere, and of course, we all know, there’s never enough.

BM-012: A view of the mayhem of the Athlete’s Village.

BM-013: Sadly this one is out of focus, but it’s the only shot I’ve got of the atmosphere inside the tent at the Athlete’s Village.

BM-014: And now we start having some fun with real people. Here’s the first individual portrait, and guess who? Mr. Marathon Photo, who was the first to post a comment seeking his photo. I’m glad to supply! Send me your email address and I will send you the full resolution version! By the way, you’ll notice that his camera is a LOT nicer than mine, but it just wouldn’t have fit in my fuel belt!

BM-015: John Tanner and I pose at the famous sign. John ran as a qualifier so he didn’t have to be raising money for charity but he was doing so anyway, it’s just his nature.

BM-016: Hafiza Farooqui from Mississauga Ontario wanted a picture on her own cell phone camera but being technically challenged at that moment, I wasn’t able to make it work. So I captured her with my camera, and she is now world famous among my seventeen readers (that’s wishful thinking, of course).

BM-017: Here’s Ms. Farooqui again, number showing, so she can now search for herself on Google and find herself here. Oh, if it were that easy to find yourself in life in general…

BM-018: Inside the tent, I was truly impressed with the setup that Lisa Rotellini of Phoenix had created. If I were that comfortable and warm at the Village before the race, I highly doubt I would have had the motivation to head for the corrals and run. For all we know, she might be there still, surrounded by pizza delivery boxes.

BM-019: I didn’t catch her name, but this lady hailed from near Cleveland. I can’t stop myself from rooting for Ohioans, since my family comes from that stretch of turf. Note to self, gotta’ run Akron someday…

BM-020: And another person who’s number can’t be seen so I can’t shout him out by name, but this runner came from Halifax, Nova Scotia. Cold morning? I don’t think he’d notice!

BM-021: Any marathon takes preparation, but here’s dedicated preparation. These unidentified Canadians were even well prepared for the long wait for the port-a-johns. Hey, why spend energy before the race if you don’t have to?

BM-022: And then we start the long walk to the starting corrals. For we who parked at Hopkinton State Park, this is our ‘return trip’ along this route.

BM-023: John Tanner sports the latest in petrochemical fashion. John prefers the Landscapers size, sans arm holes. Expect this to be the rage in Paris next year.

BM-024: A few unidentified people head determinedly to the corrals with us. This was the only time someone refused my little slip. Perhaps they thought I was going to try to convert them to something?

BM-025: Volunteers guiding runners to the corrals double as fans. We Love You Too.

BM-026: Like sheep to the slaughter? On we march.

BM-027: Didn’t get his number, don’t know his name, but he came from Tucson, and he went to Boston, I presume.

BM-028: My younger daughter has been a Care Bear fanatic for many years, so I had to get a shot of this lady staying warm en route to the corrals in the finest Care Bear fashion. Some lucky kid will get that blanket through the charity clothing donations!

BM-029: And another view, from behind. Follow Your Dreams indeed!

And that’s enough for tonight! Check back in a day or two for the next batch! There are plenty more to come!

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