the last thing i ever expected when we formulated the backyard idea;
just to have a fun race in our backyard
was that it would bring me friends from around the world.
as the race has spread across the globe
like some sort of virus,
i have made friends in so many places i never imagined.
my life has been enriched by these friendships
more than by winning a thousand races.
as the national teams have been forming over the past two years
i have come to feel a deep affection for the runners,
and the organizers.
altho we come from places and backgrounds as diverse as is possible in this wide world,
altho we may only be able to talk with google translate,
we find that we speak a common language.
the love of running
a passion for competition
the drive to explore our personal limitations
and a pride in our home countries.
these loves have combined to bring us together
altho we are many miles apart.
after two years we have come to the cusp of the competition
and the teams are gathering in their various locations around the world.
i find that a part of me wants every one of them to win.
dont get me wrong.
my allegiance is to team USA.
we have prepared to win.
we are going to try to win.
and i have done my best to help us put a team on the track that can win…
but there is no country that i would not rejoice in seeing them win.
because i have also been along on their journey to tomorrow’s first bell.
i have felt their desire.
i know how much they have put into being here
and i know the joy and pride that winning would bring them…
tomorrow we all will set out on a long journey.
altho we will be separated by continents and oceans
our hearts will be in the same place.
altho we may be rivals on the field
we are all in this together.
my wish for every runner
on every team
is that they will find the joy of competition
and reach heights they never thought possible.
that at the end of the day(s)
they will walk off the track
filled with the knowledge that they gave their very best…
and then a little bit more.
even tho there can only be one winner.
together we can all succeed.
i add a picture that seemed to me to capture the spirit of backyard:
team mexico.
vaya con dios!