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Annie "little jerry" Gustafson
City: Columbia Falls/Omaha
Begins: Dec 10, 2012
Date: Sun, Apr 15th, 2012
Entry Visits: 720
Journal Visits: 22,505
Guestbook Views: 1,477
Guestbook Entrys: 50
Finishing a marathon is one of the best feelings in the world. (my opinion) You are greeted with a smile and someone puts a medal around your neck. People are cheering and clapping. You've worked really hard to be there and you're surrounded by people who've worked just as hard. Everyone is in a good mood, there's is music playing, food and beer. It's just a happy positive experience and I think that is why I'm addicted to marathons- for the post party celebration. So what does one feel like when they have possibly become the first American Woman to finish a 3000 Km thru-hike across New Zealand on the TeAraroa Trail? Not the same. Its hard to describe, but a marathon finish is better. I was happy and I was sad, but the finish line at Bluff wasn't the best part.
The best part came last week when I read the article that Bob Glissmann wrote in the Omaha World Herald (my home town). Since then I have received a ton of wonderful messages and emails from teachers, coaches, and friends that I haven't talked to in a very long time. For me, that was the best part- hearing from all of those people. So, thank you Bob for sharing my story with Omaha.
I would like to thank all of the Kiwi's that gave me encouragement along the way, especially Dean, Lindsay and family, Wendy and David, Shirley, and Beatrice. I would like to thank all of my teachers and coaches that I've had over the years. I would like to thank all of my friends especially the MacMammas and Betsy of course.
And most of all thank you to my family. Thank you to my parents for always supporting me and letting me follow my dreams. Thank you to my brother, Raymond for picking up the phone the day I needed to hear a familiar voice the most. Thank you to my brother, Joe, for telling me not to give up on my dream of making a film and suck it up and carry a video camera. And thank you to my sisterfriend, Kay, for helping me do EVERTHING in life, and being so involved with my life. Buck 30 and I would sometimes joke around out here, when we wouldn't know exactly where we were on the map, or how far we've gone; we'd say " I bet Kay knows exactly where we are right now. She probably even has connections to a satelite and can see us :) "
And lastly, thank you to Brian (Buck 30). Ten months ago, I called him up and said, "I'm going to New Zeland to hike this long trail." He told me that I was crazy, that the trail was insanely hard, and it would rain all the time. A few days later, he called me back and said he was in. He was right this trail was insanely hard and we had forty-some days of rain. Brain and I hiked many miles a part, and many miles together. I'm glad we got to experience the TeAraroa together, it just wouldn't have been the same without him. Thanks Buck 30!
Here's the article in the Omaha World Herald.http://www.omaha.com/article/20120410/NEWS01/304109981#an-1-860-mile-hike-to-clear-her-head
Tramping The Te Araroa
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