Reading Half Marathon non-race report

I was home off work with a mystery illness on Friday and wasn’t feeling much better on Saturday, so decided not to run on Sunday.  I had also decided to stay in bed and get the train later and meet up with the others (More To Life Than Weight, The Red Bucket, I Run Because I Love Food and Tracy) but Shaun begged and pleaded with me and put on his little disappointed face until I relented and said ok then, as I was up already, even though it was only 6am (5am in real life, with the clocks going forward) and I was ill and should be in bed and so at about 6:45am we go out into the freezing cold and drive to Reading and we get to Reading at 8:30 and I’m thinking the only time I’ve ever seen Reading at 8:30am is at the festival when I’ve still been up taking acid and drinking cider and we walk up to the stadium and I’m surprised at how small football pitches are and we go to the start line and although the little foldy out Reading Half Marathon information thing clearly states no urinating in Green Park, the path is lined with men pissing although there are plenty of portaloos and Shaun finds his spot with the other blue runners and the race starts and I decide to wait and see if I can see Leighsa and Tracy pass me before going back to the stadium and two people in horse costume go past and then a man decides to piss about three feet away from me and he’s so close I can even hear it and I think you dirty peasant and I move away and I’m thinking I must have missed Leighsa and Tracy as it’s been ages and if I hear the man on the tannoy say one more time that the bad news is you’re not even at the start line yet I’m going to take his microphone and shove it somewhere painful and then Leighsa and Tracy come over and make pitying noises because I’m not running and Leighsa goes to the toilet  in a portaloo and doesn’t piss on the path like all the men have and when she comes back she sees the sweeper van and says oh, we’d better run and so off they run and I go back to the stadium and get a seat directly in front of where the runners will come in and I think hmm, I had only planned to watch the winner come in then go and get a cup of tea or something and come back for Shaun’s intended 1:48 time but if I leave, I’m going to lose my seat and a woman sits next to me and we start chatting and she says she’s called Coral and she’s come up from Dorset to support her step-daughter who’s running and she says she’s never seen anything like this before and the winner comes in at 1:02 and what a surprise, it’s a Kenyan, and I stay and watch more runners come in and think watching fit men’s not a bad way to spend a Sunday morning really and the woman on the other side of me stands up and starts shouting Shaun! Shaun! and I think eh? he can’t be in yet and then I think oh, it’s probably someone else called Shaun, duh, and Coral says I think someone called Shaun has just finished and I say my boyfriend’s called Shaun, I got a bit confused and her Shaun’s faster than my Shaun and she says ah, but your Shaun will be faster than lots of other Shauns and I say yes, that’s true and I think what a sweet thing to say and at 1:52 clock time Shaun finishes and I say bye to Coral and go off to the meeting point to meet Shaun and I’m standing there for ages and freezing and shivering and he eventually limps over and we walk back very slowly to the car park and he gets changed and we go into town and go to  Superdrug for some painkillers and some Cold Heat or whatever it’s called and then we go to a strange pub which is covered in beer mats and doesn’t allow people to talk on their mobiles and has an outside toilet and then we go to the restaurant to meet up with the others and I get a pizza which surprises no one and it’s just as well I didn’t run as they all came in with great times and I would probably be finishing around now.


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