Sometimes things sound like a great idea. They look like a great idea too. What's not to like about a few hundred crazy people dressed as Santa, running around the Lincolnshire countryside? 11 days before Christmas, so properly seasonal and everything.
Until you factor in running with an 11 year old. Who wanted to do it. I mean, REALLY wanted to do it when I was dithering about going, she wanted to go. And was all happy and excited in her Santa suit - which fitted as well as it was ever going to. Mine, on the other hand, was absolutely ginormous. I knew it was going to be big, but it made me look like Little Miss Tiny. I could have fitted a whole sack-load of pressies into the trousers with me and still had room to fit at least a handful of reindeer in there as well. And the jacket? Well, one jacket would have been ample for me AND my daughter... and husband and son. All of this was fine, all in the spirit of a Santa run... and so we were duly attired as Santas and joined the other Santas at the start.
And... we were off. Doing the 5k route, dodging small children, prams, dogs dressed like elves and abandoned Santa hats. And then... the whinging started. 'Can't we stop? Can't we just do a mile? I wish we were doing a mile. I've got a stitch. I want to walk. Do we have to run? This isn't fun. I don't like this. I want to go home. Why aren't we doing a mile? HOW much further is it? I can't do it. I want to stop. I'm too hot. I can't run up that hill. Why aren't we at the end yet?'... and so on. And on. And on.
We managed to get round by run-walking it together. She complained her way up a hill... then skipped down the other side, revitalised by the power of gravity. While my Santa jacket flapped open and fell off my shoulders and I inhaled bits of Santa beard with every sweaty breath. We were a picture of athletic prowess!
By the end, I managed to persuade her into running the very last bit. 'Look!', I say, enthusiasm zinging through my vocal chords in her direction, 'I can see all the Santas. Everyone's clapping and cheering! Let's run this last bit and we're done! We can do this!!'. 'I don't want them clapping', she grumps, 'Why are they looking anyway?'.
We finished. There were enthusiastic marshalls handing out medals and clapping. Mince pies, water, chocolate bars and a sea of Santas of varying ages. My Santa suit trousers were muddily glued to my trainers. My hands were grey with cold. My Santa belt was disintegrating. And I was carrying chocolate and mince pies that I wouldn't be eating anyway!
But hey... there was a medal in it! WOOO HOOOOO!!!!
And my daughter wants to do it again next year. Obviously.
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