It wasn't all fun and games for us of course. As a child ..well if you looked up "wild child" in the dictionare I bet her photo would be there. For me, who was more or less afraid of my own shadow growing up, it was a challenge to understand how and why she worked. Fortunately we both survived.
I have lots of stories to share. I'll limit this post to one. In November 2008, the weekend before Thansgiving, she finished her shift at work on Saturday around 10 pm or so, took the train into center city Philadelphia, crashed on a friend's couch and showed up at the starting line of the Philadlephia Marathon to cheer me on in my first ever marathon. There are a number of things that make this special. First consider that most 18 year olds will not get up before noon on a Sunday unless they absolutely must - the Philadelphia Marathon starts at 7 AM! It was still dark and very very cold..about 28 degrees.
I didn't know she was at the race until mile 9. As I ran and watched the crowd I noticed someone in an awesome turtle hat. I thought, "Emma would LOVE that... wait a minute that IS Emma!" We started wavinig frantically and she dodged runner traffic (carefully, no runners or walkers were injured) and we hugged as she handed over a baggie full of fig newtons. My fuel of choise for that race. Then she (and Dave) waited at the finish line for me to finish. It took me over 5 and 1/2 hours to finish the race. They waited for over 5 and 1/2 hours in temperatures that barely broke 32. I also learned - after I finished - that when it appeared that the organziers were running low on heat blankets, Emma went in search of one to save for me.
|Here is a photo of Emma (and the hat) and me (and the heat blanket). |
I'm a very happy camper in this photo and only partly because I had just finished my first marathon!
Happy Birthday, Emma!