The way I see it, it pays to keep your mouth shut sometimes.
Recently, I had occasion to video record the cross country runs hosted by the Youth and Sports Department, in honour of former outstanding long distance athlete, Thynell Martin.
As I did the video coverage, I was joined by the Hon. Eric Evelyn, Minister of Sports on Nevis, who assisted with the running commentary.
During the interaction, we reminisced on a not too pleasant memory in my ‘athletic career.’
It was another year of the long distance event hosted by Spencer Hanley and his hard working team at Church Ground.
I had no intentions to run at all. My last claim to fame, in terms of long distance running, was way back in my days at the Charlestown Secondary School, when I placed 5th one year and third in my final year, closely followed by my child hood friend, Joseph Liburd, on both occasions.
Not to mention the fact that, in that final race, we tagged team on that super long distance athlete, Audra Barrett and almost burned him out, but ALMOST did not work on the day. He somehow managed to wriggle out of it and claim gold nonetheless.
But back to the subject at hand.
I never intended to run, but Keith DIS & DAT Scarborough, gave me a challenge. We were at NTV on the day and he said that he was going to participate and I scoffed at the idea and said something derogatory, as regards his possible placement.
He challenged me and told me in no uncertain terms, that he would leave me in the dust.
I retorted strongly but had no intentions to ‘back my chat.’
The day of the big race arrived and I showed up at the top of Church Ground Hill with my video camera.
That was my intention–to record the race.
Then DIS & DAT appeared, complete with number on his shirt and again threw down the gauntlet.
For some strange reason, I put away the camera and put on a number.
I was going to show him how people run long distant races.
Well I newa!
The race started and I was with the group at the top of the pack, as we pushed out really hard.
As we were going through Hamilton, I HEARD LIKE A PAIR OF HARD SHOES RIGHT ON MY HEEL.
By the time I tried to look back, Oretus Jones passed me like a freight train. I pushed out to catch up with him but I soon realized what it was futile.
I looked for DIS & DAT and he was nowhere in sight-just as I expected.
By the time I got onto the Stuart Williams Drive, the arduous run was starting to take effect.
I started to tire but I was determined—I was going to show Dis & Dat.
We made a left turn down Craddock Road and my heart skipped a beat, when someone hailed me and I recognized that it was PUTTY.
Now, for those of you who do not know, PUTTY (of blessed memory), worked with the Hunkins’ funeral home and he shouted: ‘You ah run too?’
On reflection, I am now thinking, that based on what he saw of me at that time, he probably called his boss, Thelma and told her to ‘start setting up for one!’
I made it down Craddock Road; made it through town and swung up Government Road.
I passed the Hunkins’ funeral home with some trepidation, but I passed it safely.
Then I made it past the hospital.
On reflection again, had I known, I would have just checked in one time!
Someone offered me some water and I REFUSED.
When I ran at the High School level, someone had said that when you are running long distance races, you must not take in any water.
I foolishly followed the advice.
I went past the Bath cemetery and as I approached the Governor General’s residence, FARK passed me and said: ‘You aint gonna beat me today.”
I soon passed him back and after that, my memory of the event, totally fades.
My good friend Dawn, says she called out to me in Bath Village and I did not respond.
Now looking back, I had to be operating on ‘auto pilot,’ by that time.
The record will show that I made it to as far as Reliable Motors—just a stone’s throw away from the finish line at the Villa grounds and collapsed and was rushed away by a waiting ambulance.
Somebody told me that it’s the fastest they ever see Huey Sargeant run.
He rushed toward the scene where I fell, to capture the moment on video, but thankfully he reached too late.
Next thing I remember, I was hearing a conversation:
‘Put the needle here—he got some good veins you know…’
I later became fully conscious to see the face of my anxious wife and Nurse Ima Stanley, looking at me.
I was told that I had used four bags of ‘drips’. I had been totally dehydrated-nigh unto death—but God saved me for another day!
As for DIS & DAT, like the proverbial Tortoise, he came in way at the back, but up to this day, he is very happy to remind me that he finished the race and I did not.
If I had not had all that chat prior to the race, I would not have attracted so much attention to myself–the fall would not have been so embarrassing.
I am therefore reminded that God requires of us to be humble with the gifts and talents that he has LOANED US.
Let us strive to give him and him only, the glory and praise for all the gifts/talents that we may have in our possession.
That’s the way I see it. How do you see it?