Daughters, running, Sports

Sandy & I do the GAR

One unique run of which Hawaii can boast is the Great Aloha Run — 8.15 miles from the landmark Aloha Tower downtown to the floor of Aloha Stadium to the west.  The 32nd running attracted over 20,000 registered runners.  That doesn’t count the 5,000 or so military personnel who run in formation.

I have done most of the GARs to date.  But this year, for the first time, I ran with our daughter Sandy.  She was visiting from Tucson, Ariz., with her husband Dave.  Sandy shares my love of running.  As a teenager she ran two Honolulu Marathons with me.  And she is good!  Read on.

Before the race started, Sandy said, darn, she needed to find a restroom.  She said, “You go ahead, I’ll catch up.”  I’m embarrassed to say, I did just that.  I wanted to get as close to the start as I could to avoid the walkers!  That used to be a help in one’s race time but because of the chip (now in our bib) timing is from starting mat to finish mat.

I’ve gotten age group awards in the Great Aloha Run, including 1st in age group (in men 80-85) in 2015.  And I’m competitive — even with my daughter!

Sandy finishesIndeed I finished well ahead of Sandy.  I waited patiently near the finish line, even though finishers are urged to keep moving.  Finally I spotted her, she spotted me, and I used the camera in my brand new iPhone SE to capture that moment.  She looked proud and happy and I felt proud and happy.  Then, we proceeded to pick up our finishers shirts and collect some goodies.
Again, MarathonPhoto captured us together, in this happy moment.

Checking results online, I found that — in spite of my long wait — Sandy had beaten me!  Her time: 1:45:48.  My time:  1:47.11  TRULY, I am pleased that she won the family championship.

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Daughters, Love, Politics, Writing

My letter to President-Elect Donald Trump

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Back in November I wrote a letter to President Elect Donald Trump. Our daughter Suzanne suggested I send it out as a blog. So, here it is:

Dear President-Elect Trump —

I have a long record of writing to U.S. presidents.  As a young boy, I wrote to no less a figure than Franklin Delano Roosevelt, our president at the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor 75 years ago. Then as now, I was a Hawaii resident.  (Hawaii was still a territory then, not yet a state.)

I told the President of my loyal participation in the war bond program, selling savings stamps to fellow students.  And I got a letter of response from his personal secretary, Grace Tully — a letter I have kept and treasured to this day.

I have also written a fan letter, a few years ago, to Barrack Obama, who happened to have been born in the same hospital as I — Kapiolani Hospital in Honolulu.  That letter, too, was acknowledged.

So I figure that, even as an 82-year-old, why not write to the next president of the U.S.A., to express what’s on my mind!

Frankly, Mr. President-Elect, you have frightened and dismayed many Americans, including me, with your fiery rhetoric about deporting illegal immigrants and building walls (making Mexico pay for them) — and more.  This does not sound like the U.S.A. in which I have grown up and love so deeply!

My ancestry dates back to William Brewster, one of the the Pilgrims who came to America on the Mayflower in 1620.  That makes me the offspring of “undocumented” immigrants, and I expect that applies to you as well!

So may I suggest that you adopt as a secondary slogan: “LOVE NEVER FAILlETH.”  Those are the words inscribed above the altar at the church where my wife Margie and I worship each Sunday.

Respectfully, with aloha,

Christopher (Kit) Smith

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Daughters, Nostalgia

Ah, reminiscing . . . about youth

IMG_1780I took this photo near our home in Hawaii Kai, using my iPhone (naturally). I’d been out for a four-mile run and took the photo as an act of reminiscing.  All three of our daughters had attended this elementary school. The photo of the girls (below left) was taken during these elementary school years.  When we moved to the islands in 1971, we had  planned to send them to Punahou School immediately. It’s a school that two generations of Smiths before them had attended–my dad, my older brother and I.

But when we purchased a townhouse home in Hawaii Kai in east Oahu, we noted that there was this splendid looking public elementary school practically next door.  My salary at the Honolulu Advertiser, which had hired me as financial editor, was relatively modest and Margie for the time being would be pretty much a full-time mom.  Saving $$$ would be nice.

So Suzanne went to Hahaione Elementary for one year, Patty for three years and Sandy for five.  The photos at the right were taken while the girls were in Punahou. Suzanne is the top, next Patty and Sandy with our dog, Winston.
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Back to the sign at the top.  On a recent visit, Sandy said it had not existed at the time she was there.  And the “motto” — Appreciation, Integrity, Respect — was new to her.  Notice that it spells AIR — air for the hawk to fly through, I guess.

Patty, sadly, was to die of lymphoma, before completing her first year of college. That’s another story, told in a previous blog.

Bottom line:  Enjoy the joys of life — to make the memories even sweeter.

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