Good morning! This is a quickie since I am headed to spin class to work off the extra winter pounds. Then it is off to the honor society induction for work. Yep, it's a Sunday. Yep, I have to work. Didn't God tell us to rest on the 7th day?
Yesterday was my big volunteer day as I assisted with the Dash for Diabetes 5K. No! I did not run.....where would you get that idea? Instead, I signed up to line up the runners.
My shift was to begin at 2:45 and end at 4:30 leaving me a small window of time to make the 5p mass on the other end of town.
I was mentally prepared for the event as I parked the car and walked to the volunteer tent. The forecast called for 51 degrees with a slight breeze...not great, but not horrible. After thinking twice, I picked up my winter coat before leaving the house. At 51 degrees, there was no need for gloves or a hat, right?
On to the sign in...
BPM: I am here to volunteer
Ladies at the desk: OK, here is your chartreuse tee shirt with a sneaker on it and vest.
BPM: OK, what am I to do?
Ladies: You are one of the start concierges.
Start concierge? Moi? A start concierge? Is that a fancy term for the person who blows the whistle to line up the runners? Do I use my flag to direct traffic? Am I going to be on the microphone thanking runners for joining us for such a worthy cause? Wow! Me? Cool.....
BPM: Where's my flag?
Then it happened....a serious volunteer who is on the hospital board approached me....She was formidable and an expert in flag waving and lining people up. I was in trouble.
Big lady: You don't need a flag. I am the only one who has a flag. As long as I have one, you don't need it.
BPM: Gee, the directions said that I needed a flag.
Big lady: No. I have it. Follow me.
Crud,,,double crud...triple crud....no flag...but I did have a cool vest over my winter coat which sort of made me look kind of official.....
It was 2:45 and a winter breeze was turning into a frigid wind.
Big lady: Let's go. The race starts soon.
I followed Big lady to the start of the race. No one was there except a few cops standing on the corner.
Uh, Big lady...where is everyone? They don't expect me to run...do they?
Big lady: The children's race starts first then the 5K. It should begin any time now.
And so, I waited on the corner....the breezy wind was now howling.....I missed my hat and gloves but according to Big lady, we would be done soon....
Now it was three o'clock....it was getting chilly....
Looking again at my watch it was 3:15.....my fingers were going numb as I stood at my post with Big lady waiting for a runner...one runner...any runner....
3:25....I was shivering....flagless and now standing in the street. Finally runners showed up for a 4 pm start. Yep, Big lady with the flag was wrong. She made me stand out in the cold and wind for 90 minutes without a flag, gloves, hat or anything to do.
Finally the race was set to begin. Yes, there were runners....
Big lady then positioned my on the corner to stop traffic and people from interrupting the race.
Stopping traffic....no flag...just me in my yellow vest....That's rich.....which Mac truck is going to stop for me in my winter coat as my body shakes uncontrollably as I try to protect those crazy runners? I was hoping all of them would.
The race began and I was set to drop my vest off and shake my way to my car.
Big lady: We're not done yet. They make another lap, then we wait for the stragglers and take down the traffic cones.
Traffic cones....do you mean that I am going out in traffic and pick up the orange cones and bring them to a truck? Uh Big lady, I do not think that a start concierge is supposed to play in traffic...especially if she does not have a flag with her nose running down her face and in the race.... Isn't there a stop concierge who can do that?
Finally....yes, finally, the last of the runners who were more like walk runners limped by and my job as start concierge was in the books for a year. A nice young man in a truck came by and picked up the cones. My big stop of the day was a woman with a stroller who was about to hit one of the runners. Yep, I saved the day....without a flag.
And so, we end yet another fantastically mundane moment in BP mom's odd life as I consider how I am going to take Big lady down next year and grab my own flag. After all, I am there to protect and serve. To do so, I need to be properly equipped. Right?
One last note...I am still cold 12 hours after the event. My blood has not defrosted and I am still shaking....fun, eh?
Off to spin....