“Hey, I’m Walkin’ Here!”

Well, people, I’m sitting here in wonder at the thought of doing that walkathon again sometime down the road! After all the money I had to raise, I kept thinking I would never do it again. I’m interested in becoming a crew member for 2012, because those people were so helpful and it looked like they had so much fun. Plus, they’re not expected to raise a certain amount, they’re just encouraged. But I thought of the whole experience and figured that, if I sign up as a walker again, I’ll go about it differently and do more fundraising so that I don’t have to struggle with it. Plus, I would train more than I did this year.

Anyway, I want to share with you some details of the weekend, but I think it would be best to do it in bullet points.

– I hardly slept the night before the walkathon. My mom had me stay over at her place so that I could park my car in her garage. She even let me sleep on her comfy bed while she slept on the couch. But still, I was restless and excited.

– As much as I remembered to pack for the trip, I forgot just as much. I even forgot my tent decorations. There was supposed to be a tent-decorating contest and I left that stuff behind. Argh! Oh well.

– As early as it was, and considering the sun had yet to appear, it seemed most of us were morning people, if only for a few days.

– It poured down on us the first day, but I didn’t care. It was about 90 degrees, so I wasn’t exactly worried about catching a cold. We passed by so many cool places, and we even walked past the bridge that used to scare me as a kid. It’s funny how memories like that come back all of a sudden! Although I could understand why little me felt intimidated by the bridge, I could actually appreciate the appearance and took some photos as we walked on by through the rain.

– People in cars honked at us in support all the time throughout the weekend. On the first day, everytime someone honked, we would all scream, “WOOOO!” I was amused at the thought that maybe not every car was honking for us, but maybe honking angrily at someone who cut them off, and yet we were cheering.

– I tried so hard to walk that first day without hopping on a “sweep van”. We were supposed to walk 22 miles that day, but around the end, I was losing steam. I was hot and my feet hurt. I felt like crying, because I hated the thought of not finishing the route. But I was hot and sore and needed a little push. I told a crew member I needed a van, so we both gave the signal to one to pull over, but they sped past us. Huh! Thankfully, I was near an official pitstop, and after I refilled my water and Gatorade and had a snack, they told me I could get a van if I walked down to the stop sign. That’s what I did, and the van took me to the last pit stop of the day. I thought of taking the shuttle to camp, because they had a bus parked there and ready, but the driver wouldn’t leave for an hour or so. Well hell, I might as well walk it! That’s what I did, and I was able to walk into camp with pride. People high-fived and hugged me, I had a picture taken next to a walking shoe, and received lots of motivation.

– After someone helped me put up my little pink tent and I had a meal and shower, I called my mom to tell her about the first day. Frankly, at first, I felt defeated and weak because I had to hop on a van. That day was the last time I felt that way, though. So many people needed those vans and that’s what they were there for; to help people on the way! It was better to hop on one than pass out on the sidewalk with heat stroke.

– One of my favorite parts of camp, after I ate and showered, was to lie on my sleeping bag with a cold, wet cloth over my eyes, and listen to people talking nearby. It was very comforting and interesting at the same time. During the weekend, one guy was treated for heat exhaustion, a teenager forgot her “personal stuff” and a lady needed some feminine supplies. There was a little more to that story. Email me if you’d like to know what I heard. It was funny, and I had to dig out my notebook to write it down.

Well that was the end of that day, but I’ll give you more details about the 2nd day tomorrow. Until then, here are some photos:

Joshua and I were playing the night before the walk, and I thought he looked cute peering over my suitcase.

The daughter of a friend/coworker painted my nails for me! She painted little pink ribbons on my nails, but unfortunately they’re hard to see here.

I loved my credentials. By the time I was finished with the walk, it was all wet from people spraying me with water and covered in fun stickers!

I loved that we walked around the Rock-n-Roll Hall of Fame. I rarely get to see it up close, so this was very cool.

I won’t share a photo of the port-o-potties we used at camp, but I will show you a photo of my tidy little tent. It wasn’t always this tidy. At first, this little tent was a ball of heat. I took the cover off and let it air out, and after that it was an actual delight.

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7 thoughts on ““Hey, I’m Walkin’ Here!”

  1. The R&R Hall of Fame looks much different than the picture on my coffee mug. LOL, guess I’ll have to ask my sister if she bought it from a man in the parking lot-if you know what I mean!

    I’m glad you finished your walk. One of my cousin’s has done the three day a few times, but I’ve actually never asked her about it…

  2. What an amazing adventure you had! My new daughter-in-law is in the process of raising money here for her walk-a-thon. I think what you did is wonderful. I would not feel bad about using the van. That is one heck of a walk!

    I love that you kept your notebook with you to jot down notes. :)

  3. Silver: You should ask her, she’ll probably be able to tell you about all sorts of things from the event!

    Silly Rabbit: Thank you! Good luck to your daughter-in-law; I hope she’s able to raise plenty of money for her walkathon!

    I’m glad I had that notebook on hand too. I could write things down while they were fresh, you know?

  4. I am so proud of you for getting out there like that! I would have to work so hard and long to build up to a walk like that. I like the picture of your little tent. Did you load those onto the vans each morning or did you carry it like hiking style? And I would love to hear more of the details of your stories :-) You know where I am right? lalaura.b@gmail.com

  5. Thank you so much, Laura! I should’ve trained harder, really, but it was a good lesson for me. There were some out there who didn’t train at all, and I feel for them!

    Thankfully we didn’t have to carry our tents around with us the whole time. We set it up at the end of the first day and then didn’t have to take them down until the morning of the last day.

    I just emailed you a story of something I overheard during camp. :)

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