*The minister who led the prayer to close out the morning service at the Oklahoma City National Memorial ended by making reference to God reigns. And then the Heavens opened up with a downpour. I’m not sure how to explain the hail.
*It was a good idea to stick a jacket and my running tights into my gear check bag. It was even smarter to retrieve them before the race started.
*It’s really difficult to change into clothes in a port-a-potty without, um, soiling any clothing. Said change involves not letting anything touch the floor, including sock feet. Picture it — or not.
*Be very careful when using the port-a-potty while wearing one of the fuel belts that holds water bottles. If a bottle escapes, it’s gone forever and rightfully so.
*Not sure how to describe how I felt when I reached the end of the stretch heading south on Classen Ave. only to have turn back north. Seems kind of mean, even though I’d studied the map and knew what was coming. Backtracking in the last three miles is mentally tough!
*Bless the volunteers and spectators who came out despite the dreary conditions. Special shout out to my husband, kids and mother-in-law whose cheering at mile 8 was a much-needed boost.
You can’t run the OKC Memorial Marathon without feeling some sense of both sadness and hope for what the run represents. The total quiet during the 168 seconds of silence preceding the race was nothing short of moving. The race itself is a time of reflection, which for me started on the drive downtown. Driving south on Interstate 235, I passed a sign that marks a section of the highway named for Zach Taylor, the father of a friend and former colleague and also a man who was always willing to help a young reporter out. His death had nothing to do with the bombing. But I’m sure his daughters would agree that like the bombing victims, he left this world far too soon, leaving them to mark some really special moments I suspect they dreamed of sharing with their dad without him by their sides. Still, hope is ever present. This city, its people and especially those who lost friends and family that April day showed uncommon strength and fortitude not to let a terrorist act become a stubborn stain but rather a celebration and a remembrance of their lives and a reminder that good will triumph over evil.