This weekend Brother J, Dad, Jota P, and I drove to Chattanooga, TN for the Waterfront Triathlon. We had several meals that were lacking in service and quality but that is not the focus of this post. Although, Chattanooga, get it together! You had 1,500 people in town and almost nothing was open on Sunday. Where was I supposed to satisfy my post-race need for a margarita?
Due to a series of miscommunications between me and Brother J, I got relegated to support team for this particular triathlon. Which was just fine by me. It only made me enjoy my sneaky smokes, 6-pack and chocolate bourbon pecan pie the night before all the more.
Since it was the first triathlon for everyone in our group, they decided to relay it and Brother J did the swimming portion. This meant, we were up at 5:30 a.m. to eat a hearty breakfast of cardboard waffles and rubbery eggs, after which I watched J board a bus that would take him to the start of the swim portion of the race. I haven’t felt that nervous in a long time, and I wasn’t even the one swimming.
My nervousness was replaced with sheer excitement and pride when I saw him coming around the corner furiously swimming towards the steps of the river bank. He got out of the water and ran past us to hand over the digital chip to dad so that he could begin the bike ride portion of the race. It was in that moment that my eyes felt a foreign feeling. Wet.
For those of you who don’t know me, and the few of you who read this thing probably do, I almost never cry. Let me clarify. I cry at ridiculous things like episodes of The Biggest Loser, or god, that Publix commercial they always show around Valentine’s Day where the mom helps her son bake a cake for the special girl in his life and when she drops him off at school the next day, as he gets out of the car he turns around and hands her the cake. Damn you, Publix!
My point being, I almost never cry during the things in life where you are supposed to, like funerals and weddings–instead, I usually have the uncontrollable urge to laugh. But, when I saw J coming out of the water and realized how far he’s come this year, how dedicated he’s been in his training, how lucky I am that I get to have a sibling and two parents whose company I actually love and enjoy, well, it turns out I’m human: even if it was for just a split second.
But, the sappy moments they just kept on a-coming.
As I raced over to snap a picture of dad at the start line of the bike ride, I instinctively yelled out to him our family motto. He responded by yelling it back to me at the top of his lungs as he pumped his fist in the air and took off. I don’t know if there will ever be a greater moment in my life.
Well, there were two other moments that day that involved some Imodium AD and bloody nipples that kind of came close.
And can anyone clear up the Chattanoogans apparent love for sliding down any available hill on a single piece of cardboard? At least one smart fellow had the good sense to bring his boogie board with him. Regardless, this is a sport that seriously needs to catch on in Atlanta. I think we should call it ghetto-sledding or, better yet, Who Wants to Ride my Box?