After recording a video sharing my “Favorite 3-Day Moment” with John of 60Miles, I started reflecting on more favorite memories. Here’s another favorite memory, this one from crewing in 2005.
In 2005, Matt and I were crewing the Boston 3Day. The weather was icky: it was cool and rainy and windy. By the end of the day, our pants were stuck to our skin and our throats were hoarse from cheering and breathing in the raw New England air all day. Pouring water and Gatorade all day in the dreary grey day didn’t dampen the spirits in our Pit Stop and we were still laughing as we rode our van back into camp. Once back in camp, we were met by chaos as the announcement had been made that Tent City was being replaced with indoor housing. Our home for the night was an old army base, and walkers were being housed in one building and crew in another. The big dining tent and the shower trucks were set up near the walker’s building, across the compound from where crew were being housed. It took a while to get our bearings. Once we figured out where we needed to be, it was just another 3-Day adventure.
We found our gear and showered and explored the halls of our camp-for-the-night. Finally, we were settling down to our corner of the gymnasium before going to get dinner. It was about 7:30 and I was really starting to feel effects of being on the go for more than 14 hours. I stretched out on the sleeping bag for a moment and looked over to see another woman nearby. I smiled and said hello. She was hunkered down into her sleeping bag. She looked tiny and worn down. I asked her what crew she was on and she told us that she was actually a walker, but was staying in the crew building to be with her partner, but he was still working. She was cold and exhausted and said she needed to rest before she could even think about walking across the camp to get dinner. I looked over at Matt and knew we were sharing the same thought. I smiled broadly and told her to close her eyes and rest and that I was sure she’d feel better soon.
Matt and I walked across camp, collected everything we needed, and brought her a big tray of hot dinner that she could eat right there. She was so thankful for her dinner in bed that she kept calling us her angels. We didn’t know then that she was a survivor. We didn’t know then that she had just barely finished chemo treatment. We didn’t know then that she wasn’t going to see her partner for another 4 hours as his crew was called into overtime hours. We didn’t know then that she was probably close enough to dehydration that the walk to the dining tent would have knocked her out.
All we knew then was that she was more tired than we were and that we could give her what she needed. We sat with her while she ate and then said goodnight as we finally made our way to the tent for our own supper. My own dinner tasted especially good that night; and the sleep I had that night on the floor of that gym was particularly restful. People say that helping others is it’s own reward. Crewing the 3-Day is certainly a tribute to that concept. But bringing dinner to the walker that night went far beyond walker and crew; and it had deeper meaning than just how we treat one another during the 3-Day.
It all comes down to this: if you can do something for someone else, is there really ever any reason not to?