Sunday, February 28, 2016

Church and the marathon … and an excerpt

The Cowtown Marathon runners went down my street, right in front of my house, this morning. I’m just about at the halfway point. In the long ago, I was enough involved in competitive racing to recognize good form when I see it, so it was fun to watch the early runners, a little after eight this morning. I haven’t heard about a winner or winning time but it’s usually 2 hours plus, so those early easy runners were well on their way to becoming early finishers. It’s also fun to watch the styles—I saw one man who ran stiffly upright, and I thought he’d tire before long; the easy runners are relaxed, giving themselves into their pace.

A group had set up a cheering stand, complete with boom box, across the street from me, in front of the school. They clapped and cheered and yelled for each runner. Eventually they must have seen the runner they were looking for because they packed up and left. A neighbor a couple of blocks over had emailed to ask if it was okay if she left juice for her husband on my steps—she did, and it’s gone tonight. I saw a FB picture of him at the finish line—his 32nd Cowtown.

By the time Jordan came to get me for church, we had slow runners, some walkers, some groups. She stewed and worried about how to get here and finally didn’t do it the way I would have at all but I kept my mouth shut. We tried to avoid the runners by taking a side street, only to find out that the marathon planners had outfoxed us and routed the runners down a cross street. So we sat and waited for a break to cross the street. Made it to church in plenty of time, and by the time we came home, after lunch, there were no runners. I remember the day when the last marathoner would straggle in about four or five in the afternoon.

After church we had brunch at the small Park Hill Café near my house. Really good—I had quiche and wonderful hash browns—you got a complimentary mimosa which I had about half of and gave the other half to Christian. It’s a café where I like to eat lunch, and I was at first dismayed I couldn’t get my half pimiento sandwich. And they never did bring that small mint/dark chocolate bar they serve with lunch. Still it was fun.

Tonight I’m back to working on my writing projects. And have a big announcement: want to read an excerpt from The Gilded Cage, my April 18 novel about Chicago in the late 19th Century. Go here:


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