RAA DAY # 36-7/17/04 Re: RACE ACROSS AMERICA-Louis Rodriguez (Agnes filling in the story)


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Posted by Gail Marino on October 13, 2004 at 08:56:20:

In Reply to: RACE ACROSS AMERICA-Louis Rodriguez updates posted by Gail Marino on August 02, 2004 at 09:02:43:

RAA DAY # 36 7/17/04

It is a nice morning as we drive 25 miles to the start before we leave Kirk, Colorado (4200 ft) for St. Frances, Kansas (3320 ft) for 46.4 miles with a cutoff of 13 hrs 15 min. Lou starts out behind the 1st 3 runners, Bob, Russell & Luc & Kaz is just behind Lou. Of course, it is a long day & the pace is slow but Bob manages to break away early & there is no one attempting to stay with or behind him. Lou must stay behind Russell because it is Alan's rule. If anyone is unhappy with this rule besides us, we never heard anyone complain to us besides Dario. Dario has expressed to us many times the unfairness of this rule. G, Don's crew told me that there is no such ruling that a journey runner must stay behind the 3rd runner, but he must ask the leader, out of respect, if it is ok to pass him. When I showed G the ruling written up on July 4th, he was surprised & said that this is very petty of Alan. Petty or not, we are forced to abide by his ruling or leave.
As the day goes on, it gets quite frustrating to stop every time a runner must make a pit stop & filling the mailboxes along the way doesn't seem to slow us down enough to help us abide by this rule. Even though we came to run, it seems that we do quite a bit of walking, in order to stay behind the 3rd runner. By 9am, it was about 92 degrees. So it was hot & we were in a stressful position & if we tough it out, we will stay in this position for another month. So we try very hard every day to make it through each day the best we can, abide by all the rules & concentrate on all those that may be touched or reminded of the importance of early detection of breast cancer. We were fortunate to have met many people every day who shared their experiences with us, or thankful just for the reminder. At about 20 miles, "my hero" was playing on the radio. I thought that if I played it loud for Lou, it would cheer him up a little, but it actually brought back memories for him of his older brother Harry whom he was close to & lost many years ago. It was the memory of Harry that ran with Lou on July 4th, as he did many times when they were young. I realized that this was not successful when I saw the tears in his eyes, as he said, thatís Harry.
There was not much distraction for us as we ran by corn fields & corn fields. We tried sitting & waiting for Kaz, but Kaz was sitting on his aid stops to rest. After all this walking & sitting, we were only 1/2 mile behind Russell. At 34 miles, we were being chased by 2 German Sheppards, who decided to leave us alone when their owner yelled out "mealtime". By 41 miles, Lou decided to start running again for the last 5 1/2 miles. We caught up to Russell in no time at all. So for the last 5 miles, Lou ran along with Russell. When they finished together, Russell thanked Lou for his company. We then waited around for the others to finish. Lou & Russell finished in 8:58, Kaz in 9:52, Olivier & Don in 11:11 & Taka in 13:09. Till tomorrow. Lou & Agnes



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