I crossed the line happy.
Then I said, " Where's Din?"
Where was Din?
I told Hubs that I thought I saw him towards the end. Nope, Hubs was doubtful. How could he change in his post run attire when the car keys was with me all along.
So we waited.
Maybe he was so fast, he got a bad case of runner's high and forgot that he was supposed to meet us at the car.
But he's a sensible guy, he won't do that.
And we waited.
maybe he got cramps and decided to walk the whole way.
And we waited.
But even after the oldest uncles, veteran of veterans came shuffling by, even after they took down the Start/ Finish banner, even after they stopped giving away medals, we couldn't find Din.
We went to the officials.
Excuse me, I can't seem to find my brother.
I suddenly realized my voice was one octave too high.
My mind suddenly flashed to that poor boy missing during last year's run in Shah Alam.
Our brother is missing.
Oh, yes. Him. He was sent to the hospital.
What? Why? When?
He was running. They sent him on an ambulance. He's not warded or anything. Just an outpatient, I think. He's there at the hospital.
And then they talked to each other about something else.
We ran to the hospital. It was that close. Not even a kilometer away. The race was over but there we were still running. We went to the A&E.
Is our brother here?
Yup. He ran a marathon, and then there was an accident. He was jogging.
What? Who ran over him ? Is he hurt?
Ah, wait ah. I'll go check.He's in the Yellow Zone.
We looked around the ER. Every room was yellow.
Dr Geetha attended us. After I identified myself as a Dr. She produced all the medical jargon mumbo jumbo about syncope, ST levels, ECG, arrhythmias,dopamine,MIs while I was trying to remember all this from my 3rd year Medical class in Dental School.
Anyway, his BP level was really low but now it's getting better. I'm doing some tests to rule out MI since he's a young, fit fellow. I suggest a full cardiac assessment after he's a bit better.
We took up everything in exclamation marks.
A hour later, we were called in again. Din hollered out to us, grinning as always.
I blacked out. Then, I'm on the ambulance, then I'm in the ER. It's like in TV. The whole fuss is real. I got wires all around me. And they won't let me take pictures.
I ran hard, they didn't have markers. I thought every bend was the last bend. Then I saw a minah salleh with a stroller running past me. Then a few minutes after that, all I saw was black.
But he was okay after that. We even got him discharged. It was a case of dehydration and overexertion. He ran a 10K PR of 45 minutes back in UK a few months back and planned to repeat the feat here. Without proper training. Especially in this weather.
The things that baffled us were :
- The organizers didn't provide medical assistance along the way. No St John or PBSM. Thank God, Din fainted near a hospital. In the middle of a race. In front of policemen. What if he was unlucky like the boy in Shah Alam. Who was dehydrated post race , and in his disorientated state, wandered to a secluded spot and fainted and nobody found him and he died.
- They didn't accompany him to the hospital. They left him with the hospital staff. They didn't make any announcement.
- No water station along the way. Yes, it was an RM10 race but not all runners are capable of going the whole 10K without water.
And the take home note from this would probably be :
- Organizers need more organizing. Please, please be more careful in future races.
- You can't cheat running. You need proper training. Don't ever jump head first. Even if we feel we can. Latihan is letihan but the letihan makes it work.
You'll do fine.
One day, we'll race again. And you'll be so fast, you'll get your runner's high and forget about meeting us by the car. But just for a moment.
Because after that I'll see you, waiting for us, grinning as always.