A week ago my husband surprised me with the best birthday present ever: a trip out to Boston to see my sister Kelsey run in the Boston Marathon! Kelsey shared a quote from Kathrine Switzer, the first woman to run in the Boston Marathon 50 years ago:
and here is Kathrine finishing on Monday, 50 years later :
We found that to be profoundly true– we saw the best of humankind as we drove from town to town trying to catch a glimpse of Kels.
From the kids waiting on the sides with popsicles and ice, to families set up on lawns on Heartbreak Hill to cheer strangers through the most difficult part,
a marine that was injured in Afghanistan that carried a flag the whole way,
the hilarious barefoot caveman,
blind men and women running with guides, it was truly one of the most inspirational experiences!
If you ever have the opportunity to cheer someone on in the Boston Marathon, do it!
Not to mention it’s one of the most beautiful, historical U.S. places to visit!
We were dying as we were driving at the architecture and historical sites at every bend.
In Concord we saw Louisa May Alcott’s Orchard house, Thoreau’s cabin on Walden pond, and Ralph Waldo Emerson’s home all within 2 miles!
And a few things I didn’t know as a spectator:
Driving was the way to go to see her in the most spot, plus you get the BEST backroads view! My dad drove, and we would try to go between train stations. He would drop us off, go find parking and we would cheer her on.
Her husband was tracking her on the Boston Marathon app so we could see where she was and try to time accordingly. But once we got to heartbreak hill, my mom and I stayed to cheer her on there and they went ahead to catch her at the finish line.
Mom and I could NOT get across the street to the trains with the barricades so we got an Uber to the finish to met her there. The trains were packed, I would drive if you could.
A few tips:
* make sure your runner a name on the front – it makes it so fun to cheer and call out a name. Duct tape works great and plenty of people used paint on their arms as well.
* Signs are awesome but put them on yard sticks so you can hold them high above the crowd. We improvised with some duct tape and a wiffle ball bat from a local CVS.
* the signs themselves are worth going!! People are so clever. I wish we would have gotten team shirts and I especially loved face signs like these:
* Weather is crazy in Boston!! Sunday was 85, Monday was 72, Wed was a CHILLY 48. Pack for all seasons!
Oh Boston, what a wonderful city! Thank you for letting us be part of an incredible event you have here.