We had to leave our cabin vacation and return home today, which is always a bummer, but it's not terrible because now we have 3 days of at-home vacation to get organized and relaxed before working again. As a sign that it was time to be done vacationing (or maybe that it was time to turn around), we were treated to some very scary thunderstorms on our way home. We had Mike's teenage cousins in the car, so we tried to calm our nerves by acting goofy - singing cheesy songs at the tops of our lungs and listening to stand-up comedy on Pandora once we got a 3G signal. Listening/looking up weather information did not make us feel any better.
At some point during the drive the topic of marathons and marathon finish lines came up. We talked about how people sometimes end up hobbling or crawling over the finish, and how the finish is really an emotional place for participants and spectators. I realized that the finish line of any race is a very special place to be, because everyone crossing the line has a story. I would love to hear some of the stories behind the expressions on people's faces as they cross the line. I have completed two full marathons as well as several half-marathon and shorter distance races. My emotions run so high on race day, but a lot of what I feel is fear or anxiety. What if my training wasn't sufficient? What if I get sick or injured? What if, what if, what if? It's amazing that my what ifs don't leave me rooted firmly to my mattress!
Well, that's how I felt tonight, too. If I had been alone, I probably would have stopped the car. That wasn't an option for me, though. We kept on driving, and once we were 2/3 of the way home, we got a treat: fireworks. Three different shows were going on tonight, evidently, and we got to watch them out the front window of the car. It was like our reward for the journey through the storm, much like marathoners receive a medal or other prize. It really was bizarre the way the shows were all on our way home directly in front of us as the storm continued to brew up behind us. We were meant to see the fireworks, I think.
On another note, today was a very busy vacation wrap-up day. We went on a 23.5 mile bike ride (I got my picture taken with Paul Bunyan!) and we waterskied. I had no trouble, except for a couple of quality wipeouts on the skis. I have been working on skiing on one ski. Then I did one full loop slaloming - only one ski! I even made some cuts in and out of the wake! It was a big deal for me, and Mike must have been impressed because he surprised me with ice cream (a double scoop dish - coconut almond delight and chocolate peanut butter revel). Yum!
It's been a good day, but now I am exhausted. Goodnight!
Question... What have you accomplished that should have been celebrated with fireworks?