Well I woke up this morning and it was still pouring after bucketing down all night I didn’t think the event was going to be on but I told you all I was going so i thought i better turn up rain hail or shine and if it’s canceled when i get there then I’d have an excuse not to have run.
So I went, I saw and I thought I was going to come straight home again as it still hadn’t stopped raining, I went and spoke to girls at the registry and I bought a wamc membership paid the fee and found out that runners are so hard they run no matter what unless there’s lightning.i turned up in my old wheelchair with the mountain tires on and expected it to be a great big mud up where I was going to come home covered black from head to toe, when I called up and asked about it i was told there was a bit of sand but I still thought it was mud I was dealing with. I said I don’t mind a bit of sand and that I can climb the sand dunes at the beach and surly this sand can’t be as bad as that sand and every body went a bit quiet so I was thinking well noone said anymore about it so I’m fine. I planned on pushing the whole fifteen kms but i said it depends on the conditions of the track, if it is too bad and the mud slingers struggle I may only do five.
We all went to the start line and I could see this long grass road going straight up to the to the top of the hill witch was way off in the distance and presumed the little bit of sand was on the other side of the hill. So the gun goes off and everyone takes off ahead of me and turn off fifty meters up the hill, when I got there I was horrified to see a path that went all the way up and it was made out of sand that was even worse than beach sand I didn’t know there was such a thing, so because I shot my mouth off and didn’t want to look a fool I climbed it anyway thinking they said it was a little, it must finish at the top so I pushed almost a K to top and when I got there,there was a saddle and more sand going up hill the same distance again I’m going to cut to the point rather than go on and on about the amount of sand and how gruelling it was but there was lots and lots, the whole course was one big five k sand dune and it was worse than the beach by the time I finished my first lap everyone but a handful of runners had finished three laps so I thought that was enough and and it was a good enough effort as I came in it was announced that I was the first parra to do the Wally cairns cross country since the event started back in 1970 and I got a big round of applause.
I felt amazing after that and even though I only did five ks I felt like I did thirty five. Everytime I pushed up the hill I moved three inches I bogged my wheelchair up to the axles more than once, the were volenteers standing a couple of meter’s away asking if I needed help and runners all along the way asking if I wanted them to push me up but my pride got in the way and I was to stubborn to say yes because if I can’t climb a sand dune how the hell am I going to be king of the mountain so each time I threw myself out of the chair hualed it out of the bog and threw myself back in it before continuing it was the hardest five ks il ever do and when I go back next year I’ll make damn sure I put the sand tires on and not the mountain ones.what a great day!
This will probably the event I will never forget for how difficult it was.
Photo courtesy of Focused Ninja Photography