I've blogged repeatedly about the athletic prowess of the Mrs. HTF. Well she had her latest jaw-dropping performance over the weekend. On Saturday morning Traci competed in her very first triathlon, well, . . . sorta. Let me explain. Like many of you we've been building arks here in KC for the last few days. The rain just seems to keep coming. On Saturday morning we ventured out to the park where the event was to take place hoping that the rain would hold off. Well, as far as a dry morning, . . . not so much. Traci arrived at like 5 AM for the 7:45 AM start. I followed closely behind after dropping off the troops at our saintly friend's home and arrived at 7:10. Thank goodness there was a red umbrella in the minivan because it poured the entire time we were there, unless you count the 30 seconds before we got in the car to go home later that morning.
To our chagrin (a word I need to use more often) the bicycle portion of the triathlon was canceled due to the rain. I suggested they bring in stationary bikes, but I guess that was too much effort. So we were left with a swim and a run. The whole scene was pretty funny, unless you were, you know, in it. Husbands, boyfriends, parents, and supportive toddlers were huddled under overwhelmed umbrellas pretending they were glad to be there cheering-on their ladies. When in fact we all wished that the triathlon, turned biathlon (without the guns), would become a NO-athlon. But those are some tough ladies. By tough, I mean that half of them could've tossed me 30 feet into the lake and the other half would've had no trouble beating my Honda in a 3 mile race. As the race went on I made very communicative eye contact with some other supportive husbands. Some of the messages sent with raised eye-brows and headnods were:
- Can you believe we're standing here in the pouring rain in 6 inches of mud watching people swim in a lake, on purpose, when we could be home watching College Game Day on ESPN?!
- I'm wetter than my wife, and she's swimming in a lake!
But we all made it. Traci was amazing, no shocker at all. Leading up to it I was not allowed to tell people that she was "training for a triathlon." So instead I pointed out that she was swimming, biking, and running multiple times a week on the odd chance that she'd need to do these three things back to back to back at some point in the future. She's strong at downplaying expectations. After the race she made us hang around waiting for the results to be posted. She also got in line to get a massage. This left me to stoically hold my red umbrella and pretend I was happy to not be on my couch, dry. It was at this point that I experienced a quite lonely moment - as a muscle guy with long flowing hair gave the Mrs. HTF a thorough massage and I wasn't about to make small talk with any of the other folks in the area, 104% of which were women being watched closely by husbands/boyfriends, who like me, were unsure of how to function normally surrounded by that much estrogen. By my count the massage lasted just under two weeks and they finally had the awards ceremony. Traci took FIFTH PLACE in her age bracket (out of 42 women) and EIGHTEENTH overall (out of 253 women). So I continue to be in awe of this mother of four. I just hope next time I get to root her on in a tropical storm I get to watch from the comfort of my dry ark.