My exhilaration of participating in the Sunfeast World 10K Run, in Bangalore this Sunday, is by no means comparable to either the 10K runners or the wheelchair event. In fact, I wasn't even in costume. I was merely a runner - one among the 1000s of people of all ages and sizes who chose to partly jog, partly walk the 5kms that was charted out to us. Therefore, invisible to the media and even the amateur photographers who brushed us aside as 'unglamorous'.
Optimist that I am, I refuse to fret. I picked up approximately 7000 steps on my pedometer (go GCC!), met a couple of old friends (it's a small world after all) and most importantly opened my eyes to the level of (or lack of) physical fitness I had. In short, it wasn't a vain effort after all.
The sheer number of participants in the stadium took my breath away! This was just a fraction of the city's population, willing to spend their Sunday morning running for various causes... some, of course, simply for the pleasure of running. The sponsors and charity organizations were plentier than I'd expected. I learnt of the existence of run clubs in Bangalore, of book reader groups I'd never heard of and of child-help organizations whose volunteers unleashed the children in themselves as they ran, jumped and laughed with the young ones. A unique experience, it was!
What really disappointed me, however, was the litter that was strewn along the way. On one hand, everyone claimed to be running for namma Bengaluru whereas on the other hand, no one was really giving a second's thought to cleanliness! The KF bottles being handed out at the water stations were dropped off on the roads as people ran along. Some kids even played footy with the plastic on the streets. What a pity that neither children nor the parents seemed to care!
Next time around, I hope people are more responsible and the sponsors take just a little more trouble to ensure they have enough trash bins and volunteers around, to avoid the mess.
Yet, all in all, it was a nice experience. The colours, the excitement, the energy levels, the myriad of people... very nice! Very very nice!