Bert walks faster than I run!
Eleven years ago I encountered Bert competing in the night-time half Marathon of Jussy (Geneva, Switzerland). I do not know him nor his age; and he isn’t young. But he amazed me because he did not run; he just walked, very fast, looking comfortable while I had
to run to overtake him with much agony. After so many years, I recognized him when he overtook me midway of the Geneva 2019-Half Marathon last Sunday. Evidently he was walking faster than I was running. Exchanging greetings and seeing him at so much ease gave me courage that I so badly needed. I was beginning to doubt my crossing the finish-line, still far away. I decided also to walk just behind him but failed to keep his pace. Every time he was some thirty meters ahead of me I ran and caught up with him and started walking again. I must have done that twenty times. He did not mind my antics. May be it helped him as well. About three kilometers from the end I could not even run faster than Bert walking. He crossed the line I minute 37 seconds ahead of me and was waiting for me. Thanks to him I finished the 21.098-km race feeling much less tired than last year. Overjoyed having completed the race more comfortably than the 2018 disaster, I refused to listen to my agonizing knees. Then came the big pleasant surprise: The official result revealed that I had run 20 minutes faster than last year! Thank you Bert! In the over-60 category of 129, only two finished behind us. Of the overall 4956 runners we beat 32 of them, mostly less than 82 years old. (Photos: Karin Nyffenegger)