We did it. !!!!! Kendra and I walked every step of the 60 miles.
Thank you so much for your donation to our fund for The Susan G Komen Race for the Cure.
It was the most amazing experience and I think might even surpass “Survivor in its awesomeness. The whole event was of course a whole different and really meaningful connotation to the word “ Survivor” I am still in absolute awe.
There were 4400 walkers, 550 volunteers and San Diego raised 11 million bucks.. Just imagine this long sea of pink and black dressed people walking along that stretched for miles. The 60 mile route was also along the most incredible scenery and the weather was excellent. The ocean views were breath taking and such a pleasure to see in slow motion rather than driving by.
The walkers all dressed in some form of pink, black and white plus some really fun additions and great names for the teams. Ours was a team of 7 and called “Bust a Move” My shirt said “Don’t just stand there, bust a move”. The volunteers dressed in the greatest get ups. There were food tents and the food was great, pit stop tents every 3-5 or so miles with people all dressed in theme and lots of food, water and Gatorade refills. There were vans called sweep vans that would pick you up and take you to the next stop if you just couldn’t go another step. They were all dressed in theme. There was Bonnie and Clyde, hippies, a rolling diner and many more.
They of course had some form of Breast Related name.!!! Other people just dressed up and moved from place to place on the route, like the 5 Hookers who “Honk for Hooters and did, the man who had on anew attire and matching sign every 10 miles or so. There was a school band, groups of cheerleaders from schools, Girl Scout troops, neighborhoods of people and merchants from the stores we passed. Every one was cheering and clapping and hooting and encouraging the walkers who walked along with out a complaint. Merchants handed out what ever their food or drink was in Dixie cups, bakeries handed out hot cookies, kids and families handed out candy and stickers, everyone high fived you at all the cheering stations.
There were 8 cops from San Jose who volunteer their time and rode along the route and they were such fun. One fire station set up their Fire engine and gave Hugs for walkers. There was a man dressed in scrubs with a sign,” free breast checks….no waiting” There was an elementary school choir singing “You are still beautiful “ and a group of bald teenagers in prom dresses wearing banners “ Young Survivors” Boy were we reminded at every turn how fortunate we are to have good health and to love and live life to its fullest every moment. The stories are endless. My favorite was coming across a dear little lady of at least late 60’s who was trudging along carrying a grass handbag filled with this and that and many snacks from the pit stops and just looked like a local, but no, she was a walker. Good grief. We ran across her each day. I stopped to tell her she was an inspiration and learned her name was Sunshine. She gave me a huge smile and whooped with excitement when she realized “I was that woman on Survivor”
There was a blind lady with a cane and many in knee braces. We chatted to people who came from several other states to walk, many people were survivors themselves or walking in memory of a loved one. Many carried signs and photos with their reason for the walk. It was all mind boggling. My walk was in memory for those I have known that lost their fight and in celebration with those who have won their fight. I put their names on my one shirt. So many of you have your name in my shirt and in my heart. There were banners and signs all throughout the route.
Many were carried the entire route. There were patio parties going on in Mission beach with signs inviting us in for a cold one and if not to stop we got it ( beer) in a Dixie cup. Homes and stores were decorated in pink. The camp was amazing too. A sea of pink pup tents as far as the eye could see. There were Girl Scouts in the camp to put up your tent if you wanted them too. We were soooo grateful. A few huge eating tents and food tents.
A band, singing and dancing and just having such fun. It was the most amazing demonstration of enthusiasm, camaraderie and positive spirit that I have ever seen. Now that is Ubuntu. Right up my alley. 60 miles is a long long way to go but all I could think of was how people struggle with Cancer and don’t give up and it’s for more than 3 days. What I was doing was nothing . Kendra was an absolute trooper as she was walking on feet that looked like chewed turkey meat and never ever complained. There were Medical tents in camp and at every pit stop and boy were they busy. Mostly with blisters.
The lines to see them was looong by the 3rd day. I was fine except for a really bad shin splint in my left leg that was a huge impediment but luckily the Percocet halves that I had along for my shoulder did the trick and I managed to do the whole walk. It does go to show that conditioning really is key. I had stopped training or even exercising after my shoulder surgery as I had to keep that pretty still and did my legs and feet complain. Another fun part was all the “Survivor Sightings” The TV Survivor that is. A lot of people recognized me ,stopped me to talk and quite a lot to take a photo with me. My first Survivor Sighting was as I walked out of the Porto potty at the opening ceremony. Someone yelled at me “ OMG, you were on Survivor” !!!
Of course the word survivor was a very common one throughout the weekend and thank God mine was of the fun kind. I went to Medical to get my leg wrapped and the Dr and patient next to me also recognized me and out came the camera. The crossing guard at one intersection was so excited she had me sign her shirt. That chatting sure took my mind off my feet. Then I met “The Mole” and we had several “celeb photos” at a pit stop as people recognized both of us. He is a really nice guy if any of you saw that show. Such fun. The opening and closing ceremonies were awesome and so inspirational. There was a parade of flags honoring mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters friends etc and a presentation of people to match the flags. Then a circle of survivors and my gosh most seemed under 30. At the end there was a sneaker salute to survivors and all the walkers took off one shoe and held it in the air in salute to all who have been a victim of this dreaded disease. Awesome, amazing and incredible. I will do it again next year and will start training and fund raising soon. This time I will look for corporate sponsors. So thanks to all of you that made my experience possible….my walk was for you.
I have posted many photos on my Facebook if interested. “Friend me” and you can check them out. Also on my travel blog. www.mylifeoftravel.com put in my name to search