We did it! We finished the Walk to End Lupus Now Saturday morning and I’m here to share pictures + details!
First, thank you to everyone who helped us meet our fundraising goals (hi mom-S, mom-J, and 1 of my co-workers). And thank you to those who supported us with imaginary giant foam fingers. You all rock!
Now to recap the event:
We rolled out of bed way too early for a Saturday morning to quickly pull ourselves together, hopped in the car to get bagels from a little corner store, Bagel Time, and then got back to the train station to catch the 7:32am train to NYC. We got to Penn Station at 8:45 and, after a bathroom break, caught a cab to take us to the South Street Seaport. $21 later (ouch) we were getting in line to check-in and pick up our t-shirts.
The walk started at 10:00 and a sea of purple rolled past the starting line. We were near the front of the group so the majority of the walkers are behind us but the speaker said there were 5,000+ walkers!
We walked along the water from Pier 17 down to the Staten Island Ferry, circled through Battery Park where we could see the Statue of Liberty, back passed the Staten Island Ferry, and up to Pier 17 again where we got a good view of the Brooklyn Bridge.
The course was a 5k (3.1 miles) and there was a constant wave of purple walking towards us since we were at the front of the walkers and because the course looped around/overlapped itself. It was exciting to see huge groups of purple walk by and to watch everyone not involved try to figure out what all of us were doing. We finished just after 11:00 and entered the square where the tents and DJ were set up. The DJ was playing a song that everyone except Forest and I knew. Seriously, even the gray-haired ladies were singing/rapping along.
We headed over to a nearby Starbucks to grab a pick-me-up Frappuccino. A girl in line said she was visiting NYC from Toronto and asked how far we walked. She said her sister was just diagnosed with Lupus a few months prior and if she had known about the walk she would have signed up. The world of
Lupus seems to get a little bit bigger every day for me. I suppose it’s not as ‘rare’ as I had thought OR more people are aware and involved in finding a cure. That’s definitely encouraging!
So after our Starbucks stop we went back to the square where all of the finishers were gathering. We sat down nearby but the DJ played the electric slide and I hopped up right where I was to dance. When the Cupid Shuffle came on though, I had to join the dance floor with everyone else!
There wasn’t a big ‘yay-you-finished-thank-you-for-participating’ speech at the end, or we just missed it, so we found a subway stop that would take us to Central Park. We grabbed lunch and ate inside the park before wandering around and finally stopping on the lawn where we rested in the half sun-half shade for a little bit. Watching people (we’re people watchers), talking about vacations, and soaking up the warm sun.
We walked back to Penn Station (passed the restaurant where we met Keanu Reeves, I totally stared at every table hoping to see him again) and just missed the train. The board said ALL ABOARD as we entered Penn Station. We probably could have run to the platform but we decided to sit on the bench in main area for the next train. If you didn’t guess already, we watched people while we waited. And talked about our day, what was for dinner, and what we were going to do that evening.
We really did have a great day – we helped raise awareness for Lupus, we got some exercise, and the weather was gorgeous!
I can’t wait to do it again next year!
Until next time – Cindy
*all images original to A View from the Shore