Wednesday, 1 November 2017

New York, New York - Positive and Resilient

Not long after I returned from New York in November 2015, I had lunch with a friend.

While she was keen to hear of my experience of New York, I suspect my enthusiasm for the City dominated the 2 hours and in retrospect, was perhaps a little tedious by lunch end.

She too was a fan of New York having visited some years before. I cannot recall exactly her description of impact of the City but it was either:

Everyone leaves New York with a little of it in their heart OR
Everyone leaves a little of their heart in New York.

These are very different comments, be it of similar sentiment.

On November 1 in 2015, I woke early and gathered in Times Square with 31 other members of team MND & Me for a pre-New York Marathon photo.

Our group had that combined atmosphere of Australian bravado with a fear of the unknown that all but 2 of us were facing as first time marathon contestants.

The City that never sleeps was awake and well with the hustle and bustle of late night revellers mixed with many thousands of marathon hopefuls making their way to transport access points for the trip to the start at Staten Island.

The million plus New Yorkers lining the marathon route that day was a great display of the pride New Yorkers have for their city. There's was also a feat of endurance as they cheered and clapped their support for the passing parade of athletes for 8 hours or more. Their enthusiasm and overt support for us 55000 unknown runners was as amazing as it was moving.

As I write, I am aware that it is close to two years to the minute that I was in Times Square and getting ready for one of life’s great experiences contesting one of the world’s greatest mass participation events.

I enjoyed a day of New York positivity.

I suspect the atmosphere in New York on the morning of 1 November two years later, today, is very different.

But, I know the resilience and positivity of New Yorkers will also be just as it was that day in 2015.

I left New York with a little of it in my heart.

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