Well, it finally happened. I met the indominable "Ruth"
henceforth referred to by me as Mom. She exceeded all my
expectations. I had some difficulty actually getting together
with her as the crowd at Cleveland was jammed into very little
space and her description of herself and her equally great
husband were a little off.
When we actually met, we both looked at each other inquisitively
for a moment and then hugged like long lost relatives. None of
that fake, barely touching, '90's kind of hug, but the greeting
of old friends kind of hug. I immediately had a sense of calm
come over me. (I was getting a little anxious that we would pass
like ships in the night, due to the large crowds) The race we
were watching instantly became secondary and we screamed a
semblence of a conversation to each other (the PA speaker was
very close by) we wandered off and had great discussions about
nothing in particular.
Dad had some dental problems flare up so our time together was
cut short unfortunately. On Sunday I managed to glimpse Mom
heading out on the bike. Wow! what a fierce, determined
competitor to say the least. Mom is definitely a "racer" and I'm
more of a participant. Hopefully I will get some of her racing
ability soon. I moved to the finish area where I hung out my anti
drafting/ITU banner and was fortunate enough to see Mom finish a
strong second place to Sister Madonna Bruder (sp?) She had a look
of dogged determination in her eyes that was only momentarily
broken by a smile when she saw me just before crossing the line.
In the finish area we had a great hug over the barricade and
another good converstaion about nothing at all. It was getting
pretty hot and Mom excused herself for a moment to soak her head
under a sprinkler. When I asked her why she stood back and only
barely got her hair wet, she smiled and said she didn't want to
get her shoes wet! What a crack up.
She was concerned about Dads tooth so we parted ways shortly
after the race. I was amazed by her strong determination when
racing and also her total disdain for Less McDonald and the ITU.
She has the fire and passion of someone much younger and
idealistic than most OLD (had to put that in Mom :-)) people. Mom
is thoughtful, considerate, idealistic, caring and just an all
round wonderful person. I feel very privileged to have finally
met her in person and I only hope I was able to live up to her
expectations of me. If any of you ever have the chance to meet my
new Mom (Ruth to most of you) jump on it.She is truly one of the
good people in this world.
(a very proud son)
(all is right with the world now)