I got a lovely message this afternoon from one of my closest running friends, & a frequent contributor to this blog, Kathakoli Dasgupta, the young lady who literally started me on my running journey, 6 years ago.
Regular readers of this blog will know Katha & her husband Dave, whom she met through running. They now live in England, but as you will see from this story, India and Delhi (where they met) remain very, very special.
Here is Katha’s story from yesterday.
It is a bitter sweet story – tears for Delhi mixed in with post-race elation and happiness.
I give you Katha, in her own emotional words:
“So Dave & I did the London Half Marathon (Vitality Big Half around the docklands) this morning.
I managed a PB—2:03:41, quicker by exactly a minute since my last PB 4 years ago.
Given the last couple of half marathons have been absolute torture, I’m pretty chuffed about completing this one without feeling shattered. More importantly, as you’ll find in the write up, the penultimate part of the race held a special significance. It was rather fortituous that Dave wore his ‘I Race My Delhi’ t-shirt today.
I am welling up all over again.
Hope all the madness in Delhi, in India, ends soon.
It’s a PB and I dedicate it to Delhi.
My city, my home is burning and I have had many teary moments last few days.
Not being there physically to do something—anything—makes me feel totally helpless.
So when I crossed the 10 mile mark at this morning’s London Half Marathon—which is typically when I hit a wall, mentally and physically—I thought of Delhi, and it put everything into perspective.
The anger and pain I have been feeling last few days fuelled my determination to push harder and finish strong.
But not without a cheer for everyone who is doing their best to stop the fascists in their track, a prayer for everyone suffering this violence, a thought for every person injured or dead. and a sincere hope that the tough times will end soon.
Dilli Meri Jaan heal very soon.
My beloved country, let’s get back on to the path of pluralism, equality and tolerance. I have faith in you.”
Isn’t that a moving account?
Katha, well done on that PB.
And thanks for holding Delhi close to your heart 🙂