But really, it's what happens when 14 women go to San Francisco together...you spend a significant amount of time texting "Where R U?"
- Where R U now?
- Where will you be?
- Where have you been?
- Where are you going?
So...I've been a bad blogger recently, but really, part of the reason for my non-bloggyness (other than being crazy busy with teaching and my other various projects) is because last weekend's Nike Womens Marathon weekend was about MORE than running a half-marathon.
It was Elsie's surprise birthday weekend in honor of her XX birthday (she'd KILL me if I told which one, so I won't...let's just say it was a "special" birthday...one that deserved some serious recognition!) Of course, she KNEW she was going to SF to run a half. She KNEW that Betty, Mik, Alberta and I were joining her. What she didn't know is that Momma, Wilma, Daisy, Clarence, Madge, Work friends (Cindy, Joan, & Sandy) were joining us.
Let me tell you...keeping THAT secret was no small feat...it was something that we started planning shortly after we "won"and got into the Nike Women's Lottery back in April.
So...my EPIC blog post about Elsie's BDay/Half-Marathon Weekend in the City, could also be titled...Herding heffers; Herding catsl It's really about the same thing...
By the way...this is going to be a long one (really? a long blog post from Alice? What a surprise!)
|At Elsie's on our way to the Airport...as far as we know, she has NO IDEA what we have planned|
|Of course I was lucky enough to be selected for the optional morning feel up. Woo Hoo!|
As I was standing on the BART, I thought for sure Elsie could see that I was texting Cindy (who had flown up with her crew the night before), letting her know how far away we were, how long it would be until we got off the BART, but Elsie remained oblivious to it all.
I really thought we'd blown it for sure as we got off the BART and walked toward our hotel. As we rounded the corner, Mik and I could see Cindy and her crew walking toward us. Suddenly Mik looked at me and physically turned Elsie around.
- Mik: Alice...I need to go (quickly scanning the street, she spots the Virgin Records store sign and points) there.
- Alice: Really? Why?
- Mik: (looking at me for more help than THAT offerred) because...uh...because...Alex (her son) needs some, some
- Alice: Music stuff?
- Mik: Yeah...that's it...music stuff
- Cindy, Sandy & Joan: SURPRISE!!!!
- Elsie: OMG...What are YOU doing here?
Of course, we went to the room for Mimosas! I mean it was almost 11am at that point. Then Mik, Betty, Elsie and I headed off to the Nike Women's Marathon Expo
|Outside the expo on Union Square...can we talk about the weather in SF that day...85 degrees...it was gorgeous!|
Unlike other expos, there are only a handful of vendors...none of whom would be Nike business competitors, so unless you like Nike products, it's not the expo for you.
After that, we walked across the street to the Nike store.
|The sign above NikeTown in Union Square...Team in Training is a MAJOR sponsor/partner.|
|Elsie's name on the wall|
|Betty pointing at her name|
|Mik's name was near the ground|
|And yours truly|
By the way...it was REALLY WARM in San Francisco...so Elsie decided she needed some flipflops. Luckily the Nike Store had some...that were really squishy.
|Yes...we are 12. The sticker on all the shoes read "Squeeze Me" and because we are such good friends, we let Elsie walk around Union Square with one on her back.|
|Lunch at the top of the Hyatt...Donna, Irene, Me, Betty, Joan, Cindy, Sandy, Mik and Elsie|
|Outside the Hyatt was what I'd call a paparazzi wall...so we posed (Charlie's Angel style for Betty)|
|I don't even know what's going on here...|
Finally...we went back to our rooms to get ready for dinner...Elsie's birthday dinner. I was still expecting about 10 more people to show up...6 more heffers and a couple of Elsie's brothers who live in the bay area. As we were getting ready, the herd started texting Betty and I funny one-liners from THEIR flights up to San Francisco...and while were were trying really hard to NOT laugh at texts and NOT comment on them in front of Elsie, we would occassionally slip up and...
|Betty modeling the bed blanket as a reasonable shawl|
STILL SHE DID NOT NOTICE (although, at this point, I think she must know SOMETHING IS BEING PLANNING)
Finally... Momma, Daisy, and Wilma were in the hotel and I couldn't take the texting and fibbing any longer.
|SURPRISE!!!! Daisy, Momma, and Wilma... just randomly geting off an elevator in the Hotel Palomar|
SIGH! We had a few more surprises coming...but by then, I think she knew what was going on...the Herd had arrived in SF to celebrate.
We walked over to John's Grill (a landmark...) for dinner where we were joined by Clarence and Madge and Alberta (who ended up driving to LA and flew out of there). (WHEW). We had a lovely table on the second floor.
Meanwhile, I'd been trying to get in touch with Elsie's brothers, who I'd emailed earlier in the week, but all I had was a work number for one of them. We waited awhile, had some cocktails and wine before dinner, and I was getting worried that they weren't showing up when suddenly the waiter started pouring champagne.
- Me: Who ordered the champagne? (I figured it was Elsie's work friends)
- Waiter: Someone downstairs
So Elsie, Betty and I walked downstairs to find out who had sent up enough champagne for 14 women.
|Elsie with brothers Adam, Bill and nephew Nick...everyone now ...AWWWWW!|
|Yeah...I started tearing up too.|
Finally...at about 9:00, we ordered dinner. Thank GAWD the race wasn't the next day and we had a whole day to recover...sorta...
OK...I thought I'd get the whole weekend down in one post...but that really seems like a good place to end this one, doesn't it.
Don't worry. There was a half-marry. We all ran it. It's a good story too. I'll get to it eventually, but until then.
Happy Birthday Elsie...to one of my greatest inspirations! And the smartest dumb blond I know. I love ya girl!