Friday, May 21, 2010

It's Just a Parking Lot


It's just a parking lot but in the dark, waiting for bike inspection and body marking, it is the place you want to be. Although there is plenty of time, there is still a sense of urgency to get your transition set up.

In the half light of the dawn and the day's hopes and aspirations, you converse easily with those racked near you. People you most often don't get the names of; people you will probably never see again, yet, in the beginning the chatter and camaraderie with these like souls have a calming effect. Then you walk the "swim in", "the bike out", the "bike in", and "run out" portals of the fencing. Within this surrounding barricade are rows of racks of many, many dollars worth of bikes. The ground is littered with equipment and the spirit of the moment is laden with the hopes and fears of those getting ready there. But, it's only a parking lot.

It's the place you have to leave hoping you are set up right for a good transition; a place you run to on bare feet, dripping water from the swim and trying to remember the marker you had to find your bike. It is the small little piece of real estate you hurriedly try to use and leave, pushing your bike to the bike mount line. After the bike ride,it is the place where through which you run with your bike, trying to find where your transition space was. It is the area where you hurriedly try to rack your bike, get your running gear and leave as quickly as possible. But it is only a parking lot.

After the race, the festive atmosphere, the awards ceremony, it the area they are starting to take down; the area you walk through in a state of fatigue and post-race euphoria, talking and saying good bye to friends. Your transition space is a state of disarray but what it all represents make you pause a moment before you take your old friend off the rack, and leave this area that is being destroyed all around you. But, it is just a parking lot.

In a short time the wind from the water will blow peaceful across this place taking with it all that has been there. After all it is just a parking lot.

But, you will take a piece of those moments spent there with you. What you did then and there is forever part of what you are now. Maybe it wasn't just a parking lot.