I keep calling it the Challenged Athletes Triathlon, but technically it’s called the San Diego Triathlon Challenge. There were plenty of “able bodied” folks competing right along side the many “challenged athletes.” We spent the day down at La Jolla Cove where all the action was taking place. There were so many vendors. Lots to see and do. We met so many amazing people. The vibe was just incredible.
My favorite new friend we met was a dude who reminded me so much of Nick it was scary. He’s a bilateral below knee amputee from a freak accident involving an 80 fall. Like Nick he wasn’t just an amputee. Instead of a spinal cord injury, he suffered a traumatic brain injury and lost sight in one eye. He was so open and friendly with us and had a personality that made us feel at home. He was handsome, and when I stood back I thought the two of them could easily be brothers. We spent a lot of time talking prosthetics, duh, and Nick and I got some great info from him. His legs fit him perfectly and you could really tell by the way he stood and walked so naturally, further inspiration to get Nick into a different prostheses system.
Not only was the actual triathlon taking place all day, there was a separate 5K race, a special kids run, and a huge stage with a couple hundred spin bikes and hand cycles set up for a FOUR HOUR ride!
Nick took this valuable opportunity to meet and pick the brains of the myriad prosthetic vendors at the event. Everybody was eager to share their knowledge and opinions with Nick to assist him in making the best decisions possible in the near future when he changes up his legs again.
We also ran into a friend.
After about two hours, Nick desperately needed to lay down, and wanted to get out of the crowds. So we made our way to a grassy area on the far side of the action and relaxed for a bit. There was a very interesting fellow there playing with the pigeons. He trained them to fly circles and land on his fingers. He gave us some sunflower seeds and showed us how. I was surprised by their weight and the warmth of their feet. Very cool experience!
And we also got to play with my beautiful cousin Kim, her rockstar hubster Chris, and their adorable kids. Hanging with them made my day.