Four years ago I was invited to an outdoor garden party where many distinguished guests were noshing and talking. There was a billionaire who was planning and in training for a trip to space, there were captains of industry, socialites, philanthropists, and then there was me. As I introduced myself and entered into various conversations (a real skill for an introvert like me), I met a couple that had just returned from Eugene, Oregon where they had attended the U.S. Olympic Trials for track and field. They were ecstatic; they talked about the intimacy, the excitement, and the feeling that they were witnessing the making of future medal holders. There was a certain patriotism that they exuded. I asked if they regularly followed track and field, and they said no, but that didn’t matter. Based on their experience they would now.
I remember thinking, that’s something I would like to do. I would like to see top athletes that are competing for both their country and their own accomplishment perform. And the fact that it wouldn’t be a huge spectacle, but more like a sneak peek into what is to come. I had forgotten about that wish, that moment when I envisioned myself in the stands watching a world record being broken, or someone finally accomplish their ultimate dream and qualify for the Olympics. But I heard Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt on the radio talking about the upcoming Olympics and the aspiration to go to Track Town USA (Eugene, OR) popped back in my mind. I wondered if I had missed it. With a quick search on the internet I discovered the trials happen June 21 – July 1. It’s a day’s drive from Seattle to Eugene and you can even purchase a day pass for whatever events you would like to see. Just looking at the website I could feel an adrenaline rush, and then that voice kicked in that said, “You’re too busy. Who would want to go with you? This is a silly, selfish extravagance.” I closed the website and tried to wipe it from my mind.
As you can see from this post I wasn’t successful. So, I’ll put it out there. Anyone interested in attending the U.S. Olympic Trials for track and field. Who’s up for a road trip? What’s your favorite event? How many do you think we could sleep in a room? Are there any rooms still available? And do you realize that this opportunity won’t come again for another four years? I’m almost there, how about you?
© Kelly Tweeddale 2012