His name is Martin. Affable and shy and in his third marathon. He’s never been to Toronto before but he tells me he loves it. He’s here on his own. Having ventured here from another hemisphere. His English he bashfully apologizes for. But without need I assure him. After all, his English skills far exceed my own knowledge of his mother tongue. We talk about running as is inevitably the case when a runner meets another. And somehow despite a language barrier we innately understand each other. We share a passion. And that is enough of a bond. Both of us have worked hard to get to where we are. We’re as giddy and excited as school kids on the first day of class. And together we share this moment of anticipation as we talk about the race we are about to run.
Just two strangers from two different lands on a shuttle bus to the start line.