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My Unicorn, Finally Caught


(For the post that (very loosely) prefaces this one, click here.)

My GPS watch beeps its dying throes, signifying the impending death of its battery. I have been testing its limits for almost eight hours, running on tree-obscured dirt roads in maddeningly differing paces. These beeps interrupt my thoughts and I angrily mash its buttons to tell it to shut up. I notice that we have gone 31 miles, and if my memory of the course is correct, we should be approaching the finish any time now. 

Of course, this is only speculation—I’ve never made it this far before in the Full Moon 50K.

The time, as my suffering watch tells me, is 3:45AM. Sheri and I should make the 4AM cutoff with plenty of time to spare. In the past two hours, in our nearly pitch black environs, I have seen approximately 155 people—5 of them were other race participants that we passed, and 150 or so were passengers of a commercial airplane that flew 30,000 feet over our heads. Delirium is setting in, and I am ready to rejoin civilization again.

Just as I’m craving a cheeseburger, a vanilla latte, and hearing anything else but the piercing shrills of cicadas, Sheri notes that she sees the campgrounds ahead. Then we hear the sound of music. Then we see the headlamps of people standing in the street. I am about to capture my unicorn.

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