This is a blog I've been meaning to write for a couple of weeks.
I met Wes (as some of you will know) the other Monday (well beginning of October actually). It was great of him to take some time out and meet me for breakfast before his work day - I was visiting Atlanta for a few days at the start of my holiday. It's kind of special meeting up with fellow bloggers in this increasingly smaller world of ours so I was grateful to be having a bagel with one so far away from my home.
Now you may recall I met and managed a couple of runs with Wes earlier in the year on another ATL stop. Wes looked much the same, maybe a couple of pounds lighter - one thing he did have though was what I call (and I've heard it before) "the thousand yard stare". Now I've seen this before and recognise in myself that I've possessed this thing myself. However my circumstance was different... mine came about when I was home on R&R from Iraq and later when I got home for good. I've seen it on others in similar circumstance and indeed on friends who have been far away in totally different circumstance - for example of friend of mine went teaching for nearly a year in Ghana. Similar can be said for those who are suffering or recovering from life threatening illness... Living a life out of the norm and coming back to "society", I believe, usually induces the 1000 yard stare.
It's a state of being (in my mind) where you are in your environment but can't quite comprehend it all. You contemplate your own purpose in life and you begin to see life from a different view. Usually I think someone who has the 1000 yard stare will be different after but somehow the same and possibly a better person from this period of contemplation. Wes had this look of deep contemplation. Of someone who was still on a journey.
His posts following our meeting have certainly been some of his best, honest, soul searching and thought provoking.
I am beginning to understand the journey which is that which takes you towards your first ironman.
Wes is nearly at his journey's end - he races this Sunday. Or maybe it's just the beginning of a new journey..... one thing I feel is for sure - finish or not (and the only reason I think not is if he has some form of bad luck/ mechanical yuk which one cannot count for)... one thing for sure, Wes will have made the ironman journey (in my mind).......... there's no doubt he has already been through a life changing experience. I just wish him luck and success for his ultimate goal this Sunday...... TO THE FINISH LINE WES, TO THE FINISH LINE