Its May 16, 2015,
We are in Virginia living the dream.
We travel together, friends John, Tom, Sean,
In the TMR VW bus it is the bomb.
We drove, we chatted, became runner, crew and pacer,
Headed to Massanutten100 as a determined racer.
We arrived rested, eager and proud,
Set up camp then joined the crowd.
We sat with friends RUss and Niki,
Hoping his first 100 would not be humid and sticky.
We were briefed, fed, and soon headed for bed,
Once we settled not much was said.
Tom and Sean read by headlamp in the night,
While I laid down in the bus asleep until morning light.
During the night nightmares came of missing the start,
It seems anxiety was tearing me apart.
The good morning came and we all awoke,
Breakfast was eaten, gear together, to the start line we all spoke.
The clock ticked down, its O-dark thirty,
Its time to get a running, down and dirty.
I hugged my friends and crew for i love these guys,
I would see them soon again in the sunlit skies.
Caroline Furnace, Moreland Gap, E-burg Gap,
I see the crew and food and water are on tap.
You’re looking great, strong and tall,
Keeping pushing through that wall.
You will see us again but awhile ahead of us,
You have Woodstock, Powell’s Fort and Elizabeth’s Furnace.
Stay strong, stay safe, we will see you at mile 33.3,
This stretch of ridge, and climb at Elizabeth’s Furnace was crazy.
The bear, the snake, the hikers/campers having fun,
All the time im thinking this race is nearly half done.
The volunteers, aid station help, all amazing and bright,
Easy to continue as they prepare me for flight.
Feet are feeling hot spots, its duct tape time,
Taped them well good and covered, hot sensation is gone and feeling fine.
Soon gravel roads appear long, no rocks and seemingly flat,
This should be a reprieve but its anything but that.
The night has arrived, Shawl Gap, Veach Gap and Indian Grave have come and gone,
The climbs and descents, rough, rocky, challenging and long.
I meet up with others forging ahead,
Run with a buddy is stuck in my head.
The crew informs me a pacer i will have at Habron Gap as I will arrive after six,
I know in my mind i have lost track of cut-off time, I need to quicken my magic sticks.
Tom joins in pacer number one, freshly armed with energy and wit.
He’s patient and calm but cracking the whip.
We press on into the darkness not quite whippoorwill/headlamp time,
We move ahead, lights go on, the rain begins like droplets of falling mines.
We climb, we descend flow downhill,
The trees come alive and send out a shrill.
Miles back hydration an issue but now cured as urination is bliss,
I can finally celebrate that I can take a piss.
Camp Roosevelt, Gap Creek and Visitors Center arrive and I boast,
Amazing am feeling extremely fine but my feet are toast.
Bird Knob is next and we need to hustle,
Time is short and cutoffs are trouble.
Ah Alast, Sean joins in to have some fun,
Although my feet being toast makes it difficult to run.
A fast pace hike is what I can pull from these old bones,
As trail traveled has worn on me over the Massanutten stones.
Again Bird Knob is next then to the Picnic Area,
Where we work to avoid the beautiful Grim Reaper.
Sean is steadfast, sturdy and true,
John we are running out of time and I need to push you.
He tries to move me swifter through the trees,
But now the descending has destroyed my knees.
The course sweepers have caught us now and that seemed to come up fast,
The sweeper informs me I am dead last.
A buckle on my waist is the teams desire,
But time is short and it may be a Black Rose with briers.
I can feel the pain of defeat in the air,
At that point Sean had to hear me swear.
I have come so far, worked so hard,
Is it possible the Grim Reaper would hand me a pass, a free card?
I approach the station wanting to pass and move along,
The crew has the look that I’ve taken too long.
My beginning misguided thoughts of pacing to fast,
Has led me to be on the trail dead last.
The trailing crew was at my heals,
Removing marking flags as I spun my wheels.
The time has caught me to my despair,
The buckle we sought has vanished into thin air.
It will be the Picnic Area we will reach,
But hold onto the memories, experience, fun, friends I will preach.
My emotions I hold Inside in check,
I feel for my crew as our dream was wrecked.
Soon those thoughts go away,
our amazing adventure trip to and from creates friendships to stay.
My friends I love and appreciate with all my heart,
These two guys and I will never part.
Memories I have I will hold dear,
The VW bus, Joe Dirt, friendships, Mo’s birthday song, Sean carrying running gear.
Friends back home supporting the cause,
Knowing I could close my eyes and hear their applause.
Setting up camp, hanging out and talking race tips,
Only to find out we were infested with ticks.
The rest area for a bit of sleep,
Only to hear the trucks pulling in and out with a restless screech.
Tom’s game of fun and wit,
Got me laughing so hard I had to shit.
Chaffing so bad having to stop,
Removing my compression shorts to let them hang out.
The excitement i felt asking where Bidler was ahead,
Knowing he was moving fast and not dead.
Feeling the heat of day, something I had not felt,
Hoping like hell i wouldn’t melt.
How happy I was to feel the rain,
Only to think it would cause mud and increase the pain.
Ahhh yes the best of all, not being able to pee,
But when entering the AS to see the crew, I said am so happy I can pee and having the entire crowd happy for me.
I want thank so many people…….it’s so hard to begin.
All the TMR members who did long/short, night/day training runs, mountian climbs in the Whites and Bridgeton and really kept me motivated. You have all changed my life.
Mindy and Pete looking after G-girl……and understanding when we broke down on the way home andxwere running late.
Danielle and Ryan and Sammy Sam Sam for looking in on the Tipster.
Thanks to those who had run Massanutten100 before for the wisdom and advice….it really helped along the way.
A major major thank you to Tom and Sean for agreeing to join me as my crew and pacers. It was a great feeling to hear others on the trails and at aid stations speak of the trail monster guys that have been helping out through the event. That’s what makes me proud to be a Trail Monster.
To Amy and Jes. …..thanks for your cheerful and encouraging support at the aid stations.
I thank Sean’s son Devin for lending his dad to me, I couldn’t have made it as far as I did without him.
Ahhh yes to Mo. Tom’s wife……you lent me your husband on your birthday weekend and all we got yay was a brokendown VW that needed road repair……thank you for lending me Tom for the weekend.
To the organizers of Massanutten100, thanks for a well organized fun and incredible event.
And thanks to all that were sending incredible vibes during the event.
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