I kind of fell off the posting about the 3-Day thing, and it's surprisingly hard to get back into it. To even recall details.
On Saturday, Jen woke up around 4:30am to go to the bathroom. I lay there in my sleeping bag pretending I didn't have to go as well. But by 4:45 when she'd returned, I'd given up. One quick trip to the portapotty later (through a very dense fog, I must say), we both admitted we weren't likely to go back to sleep. We also commented on how refreshed we felt. I honestly attribute most of my stiffness that morning to sleeping on the ground.
So we had a nice hot breakfast, spent a good 20 minutes prepping our feet and got in line to start (and to stretch while we waited). The route opened at 7am. The bicycle and biker safety were all lined up at the start whooping and hollering as we set off. Becca and M'Risa joined us while we waited.
We meandered a bit through Fairmount Park and then M'Risa started lagging behind. Since her inseam must be a good 6 inches longer than mine, this was definitely odd. She seemed a bit pale and shaky, so we encouraged her to sit at the curb. She ate two granola bars I had in my fanny pack and started to pink up a bit. I'd sat down beside her so she'd be a bit less conspicuous sitting there alone. By this point three more team members (Angel, Robin and Megan) had caught up to us. Robin reported that they'd elbowed their way through the crowd in line so the "could catch up to their team." Hmmm. Anyway, once M'Risa had recovered we all started out again. And pretty soon, Jen and I were left in the dust. The others all seemed in such a rush, and really ... we didn't see the point. It wasn't so much their pace that bothered me (I mean, you can't comfortably adjust your pace for 60 miles of walking. You really have to go your own speed.), but their attitude was all kind of "we're going to get there first, what's wrong with you that you're walking like *that*?"
So, down past the Philadelphia Zoo, through Penn (where Jen went to vet school), through West Philly (shout out to Will Smith), right past Joe's and my first apartment (1022 S 47th Street). Anyway, I posted the rough route a few days ago. We walked right through the middle of Pat's and Gino's steaks in South Philly and stopped at a park for lunch. Then we headed up through South Street and the Historic District.
There were some truly awful right-to-life people hanging out on Independence Mall. They had giant (like 6x8') plywood signs with bloody fetus photos on them. It was positively dreadful. Some of them even made comments about how we're all on the "same side" since abortion causes breast cancer. Wha??? Causes??? (incidentally, recent giant studies don't indicate a link)
So, we averted our eyes and continued. I couldn't really come up with anything to say or do, so we just went uncomfortably on.
Through Elfreth's Alley (which I didn't even know existed). Past several Ducky Tour groups (the team right ahead of me got ducky quacker thingies, but they'd stopped handing them out by the time I got there). Through Chinatown. Past City Hall. To the Art Museum.
Yup! I jogged up the steps. Jen opted to stay at the bottom to take my picture. It was actually pretty easy going up. It was nice to stretch out my stride a bit taking the steps two at a time. Coming back down was harder. The motion hurt more and I was just wobbly and tired enough to feel a bit leery about going down.
Then there was a looong stretch on West River Drive. We had a nice view of Boathouse Row and there was some sort of rowing regatta going on further upstream. Most mostly, honestly ... it was kind of boring. Just more walking and walking and walking. Jen and I were both too tired to really chat much, and we were both pretty worn out. And ... there was something draining about knowing that all that walking was just leading us back to camp. Where we'd started the day in the first place.
(They used to run the routed in long stretches, all strung out, one day after the other. But it costs the 3-Day $100,000 per event to move the camp to a new location. So, by making the second day a loop, they save $1.2 million annually.)
We wound up back at camp eventually, had a nice dinner and I finally ran into my just-about-best-friend, Dana. We'd ridden up to Willow Grove together and I hadn't seen her since we parted ways with our separate teams at the mall. Jen and I ate dinner with Dana and her team and we had a nice time.
There was dancing in the big tent that night. I know ... what???? I hiked up the big hill to get a night shot of the city. The air had cleared up a lot and there were buildings with pink lights on them in honor of the 3-Day. Pretty cool.
Then, off to bed by 8:30pm.