25 June 2017
Commando took the first of his drugs on Friday. Six little methotrexate tablets, two doxycycline and one hydroxychloroquine. He ran parkrun on Saturday although he felt slightly nauseous, probably from the methotrexate. Those running nearby may have wondered what all the rattling was. Today he took the first of the folic acid tablets, along with the daily doxy and hydroxy (we are even beginning to give them pet names). Tomorrow he is going back to work. The wisdom of running a 10k today was always questionable but he promised he would just pootle round. I didn’t believe him but he never listens to me anyway so all I could do was go along.
At least it wasn’t as hot as it has been. In fact it was overcast and a little chilly when we arrived at the Ordnance Survey building. Last year we all stood around inside the building enjoying the air conditioning and avoiding the heat outside until the last minute. This year the building was closed so we stood around by the pool outside the doors shivering a little and waiting for the rest of the Spitfires to arrive.
After a swift team photo we all headed for the start line on the other side of the car park. The runners lined up and the cheering team of me, Gerry and Ben, took our positions on the grass at the side of the road. A few people ran up and down to warm up. I wished I’d worn a jumper under my coat for the same reason.
Eventually they were off. More by luck than judgement I managed to capture Commando going past. He gave me the thumbs up but he didn’t look particularly confident. At this stage his sunglasses and skimpy race vest seemed a fairly optimistic choice. Long sleeves, leggings and a woolly hat might have been more appropriate.
Once the last of the runners had passed and I’d finished the impossible task of trying to spot Spitfire shirts in the crowd, Gerry and I headed back towards the OS building. The brick wall dividing the car park from the building entrance is a thing of beauty. It is covered with textured bricks and curious contours that may or may not be meant to represent those found on a map. Everywhere we looked there were bikes. Obviously a lot of the runners had warmed up by cycling to the event.
There were stalls set up on the grass near the finish line with all sorts of running supplies. There was also an ice cream van. Last year it did a roaring trade. This year there wasn’t even a queue. Gerry discovered a stall selling coffee and kindly bought us both one. It may not have been the best coffee in the world but holding the cup warmed my hands.
The first runners began to cross the finish line surprisingly quickly. The course is relatively flat and the cooler weather probably helped speed them along. At least looking for Spitfire shirts stopped me thinking about how cold I was. One by one the Spitfires crossed the line. Commando would normally be in the top five of the Spitfires running today. Part of me was relieved when he wasn’t. At least he was keeping true to his word and taking it easy. Another part of me was worried. Until I actually saw him I couldn’t be sure he was ok.
When he did appear he looked comfortable. There was even a smile and a thumbs up as he came past.
Not too far behind him was Sharon, the final Spitfire of the day but by no means the final runner. For once I didn’t hang about to see the end of the race.
Another milestone had been passed. Commando had run his first 10k since he started feeling ill. It hadn’t been fast and it probably hadn’t been pretty. There may have been some rattling going on with all those pills. As we headed back to the car the sun began to peep from behind the clouds. Hopefully it was a sign of light at the end of the tunnel.
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