Sunday, April 17, 2011

london marathon 2011

I just love the London Marathon. Pathetically, I’ve even cried watching it on television. I’d been to watch it “live” twice before. I took Ruth, Hannah+Alice to the event some 20 years ago (blimey!). It’s simply a brilliant occasion and the crowds are just fantastic. This year, I specifically went along to support great friend Helen (from school) - I also hoped I’d be able to cheer on Rob (Deering) from our days in Thame. Pathetically, in the event, I didn’t see either of them (well, at least I don’t think so)…. afterall, there were nearly 36,000 runners. IF Helen was wearing a black baseball cap and a purple vest, I might just have seen her from behind at about 30m distance…. but, by the time I registered that it COULD have been Helen, the moment had passed and I wasn’t confident enough to shout out “COLLEY!” (as we’d previously agreed). As in previous years, I took my place at the northern end of the Tower Bridge. I arrived there at 9.30am; got myself a coffee from Starbucks; and stayed “at my post” for well over four hours. Along with the rest of the crowd, I spent the entire time applauding enthusiastically (and taking the odd photograph). The atmosphere and camaraderie amongst the crowd was simply wonderful. I take my hat off to ALL the runners – Tower Bridge marks the 12 mile point and, clearly, there were many who were already suffering (but obviously encouraged by the crowd!).

Photo1: the elite Men’s athletes (the winner, Emmanuel Mutai , is in the green vest closest to the camera). Phopto2: I particularly enjoyed the support provided by a group of spectators perched on the roof of the adjoining Tower Bridge Hotel – especially the encouragement provided by a couple of women using a megaphone (eg. shouting such things as “come on Bella, you can do it!” to very surprised runners as if it was the voice of God!)…. absolutely precious! PS: I also saw Denise Lewis at close quarters - but she didn’t seem to see me!

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