Saturday, June 25, 2011

Things That Make it All Worthwhile

Today ended up being a non-running, bag-watching kind of a morning, as I am among the slightly-injured. Nothing major - I must've turned my foot wrong yesterday or something. One minute, I was in the pet store paying for my cat food, and then when I turned to walk away from the register, I felt a pain in my left foot when I put weight on it. This is probably at least partially shoe-related, because the minute I got home, I took off the shoes I was wearing (which were running shoes, not heels) and that seemed to improve matters. It wasn't swollen or anything, so I wasn't too concerned. This morning when I woke up, it was a little sensitive, but I could walk on it. I decided not to push it any further than showing up at practice this morning. Based on past experience, that's when I end up making it worse. So, I decided to swap bag-watching duties with my Mentor Buddy, Jenna.

While we were waiting to get started, we saw what can only be described as one great, big, giant "EWWWWWWWWW!!!" - the woman below giving her pocketbook dog a bath, IN THE DRINKING FOUNTAIN. Of course, within minutes of her departure, a runner came up to the fountain to get a drink. About a dozen of us watched in horror as she ignored our frantic shouts of "NOOOOOOO!!! DON'T DRINK THE WATER!!!" It reminded me of when people watching a horror movie yell "DON'T OPEN THE DOOR!!!", and the person on-screen opens the door anyway.

One clean dog = one really gross drinking fountain

While I was bag-watching (which for you non-running folks means I sat on the bleachers and watched everyone else's stuff), I decided to play around with some of the camera apps on my phone and take a few pictures. Below is a shot of the Astoria Park track taken with my phone using the Toy Camera effect:

After practice, I met with two of my mentees, Yvonne and Andrea (who are both doing really awesome so far) to talk about fundraising, and go over a few things, since this is all new to them. The fundraising is possibly the most intimidating part of this whole journey, especially if you've never done it before (at least it was for me). A few other folks chimed in with ideas, suggestions, etc. which was very helpful! One of the things I'm finding so great about mentoring with the Team in Training group in Queens is that we have so many incredible people, and a really nice sense of camraderie fairly early on. When you consider that we officially started our training season two Saturdays ago, we're bonding really quickly.

On the way out of the park, I spotted this gentleman. I'm not quite sure why he was dressed this way, but from the front, it looked like he was carrying some sort of notebook or sketch pad.

While waiting for the train back, Jenna and I had this fantastic view:

The view from the Astoria Blvd subway platform this morning - how awesome is THIS???

No sooner had we put away the camera phones, than a female NYPD officer came up to thank us for all of the work and effort we put into what we do, as she put it, "in case nobody else has". Then she went back down the stairs to the station entrance. I'm guessing from the way she said, that she, or someone she knew had a connection to some form of leukemia, lymphoma or other cancer. It was a goosebump moment, and I'm glad Jenna was there with me to share in both the officer's thank you, AND witness the goosebumps that showed up on my arms within seconds.

The same view, using the Toy Camera effect