As the days approached to the big NYC marathon, I witnessed the tragic events unfold in the Northeast from the comfort of my own home while watching the news and checking the Internet updates. It simply was unimaginable to fathom a trip to the Big Apple, during such trying times for so many people in New York and New Jersey suffering. After the initial devastation of Sandy had passed, Mayor Bloomberg declared that the NYC marathon must go on, in order to continue to stimulate the much needed economic boost to the city. This resulted in the reflection of our circumstance for Karin and I who were on the fence anyways because of our sudden sickness and lack of running. The easy decision would be to call it a day and to defer to next year and to rest up at home.
Currently I am sitting in the Charlotte Douglas International airport awaiting the boarding of our plane flight 4581 to LaGuardia. Yes, we decided to make the trip after all, despite so many signs that could have easily swayed us to change our minds. We had been in a facebook group of runners whom were excited for the big day in NYC until the climate changed drastically and the huge cloud of guilt was held over this event. Some people may view us as greedy people for traveling to a wrecked city to participate in a marathon while many are homeless or without food. While at work on Thursday I was listening to the broadcast of NPR morning edition and one of the segments was of course on "Sandy" and her impact on NYC. One of the analyst commented on small business around the city and said that "the local eateries and pubs, cannot make up the business that they lost while the business was closed and the power was out, unlike airlines, who continue to add additional flights to their daily schedules". " New York City needs people more than ever to come and spend their hard earned money at local establishments so that people can get back on their feet".
This struck me pretty hard and I looked at the trip from a different perspective. Karin and I spent our hard earned money to register for this race at $255 per person, booked out hotels, our flights and had been anticipating this trip. We could back away and do another marathon, but why? Why not go to NYC, spend our $, stimulate the economy, and even lend a hand with the clean up. This is my opinion, as everyone will have their own argument to attend this event or not, but I just hope that the city comes together to cheer us on as we path down the streets that have recently had the worst of times. We are coming for you NYC, to grow ourselves and to honor you in one of the worlds most cherished events.