One of the lovely things about kids’ fall sports is being outside in a Maine Autumn. As I type, I am watching an ever-so-pale pink on the clouds underlit by the late sunrise (it is 6:56 a.m.) drifting across the distant hills, which range from deep pine to russet, gold, mahogany, bright green (the willows along the drive), deep umber on the trunks of trees that have lot their leaves already, and the burnt crimson of the blueberry barrens on the next hill over. Going to Eli’s cross country meets is just as glorious, and we’ve had not-rainy weather the entire season!
Eli had a bumpy start to his season, coming down with a flu just a couple weeks in to school. That affected his breathing and therefore his running, but he finally had a race with which he was happy last weekend at Homecoming.
Senior Ben Trapani is poised to come in near the top in the state this year. I remember when Eli was in 6th grade and Ben in 8th and we would watch him at track meets, a full lap ahead of the field. Not much has changed in four years, except that he is bigger, stronger, and even more of a fine young man; well, I would say that his confidence in himself and his running has grown, and it is good to see because it is confidence well-placed. Will sure miss him after he graduates, but his younger sister Emma, a Freshman, is already at the head of the pack in the girls’ races! Caleb is a Freshman, and is now the second-fastest on the team, something Eli predicted before the season began.
I see in Caleb the same focus and drive that I see in Eli, so it’s going to be a good few years for the boys. And Eli, though not a typical runner’s build, is determined and fast as ever.
Eli has an incredible drive to compete and win, and it comes out at the end of every race. He can run down kids like you wouldn’t believe if they are anywhere near close. Here he’s putting it into overdrive:
And checking his time after crossing the finish line: