18 November 2017
About 22 people from my unit, the 86th Combat Support Hospital, ventured off post this morning to downtown Kuwait City for the Gulf Bank Marathon. It started at the Marina Mall which showcases some pretty amazing boats the Kuwaiti's are able to afford. To get to the start we had to walk all the way around the marina to the bridge.
Because the race started late there was plenty of time to look around at the people starting with us. The women were just beautiful. There was a 5K, 10K, 1/2 marathon and full marathon all starting at the same time. I imagine with all the makeup and jewelry these women were wearing they had to be just doing the 5K.
The first loop of the race was beautiful with a large portion actually along the gulf. We passed by their cultural center, Grand Mosque and actually went through the souk. Some of the vendors were passing out grapes, etc to the runners. After the first half which was basically one big loop we then did four small laps which became VERY monotonous. It went past the towers but even they weren't impressive by the 10th time you passed them.
The volunteers were great but did seem to loose steam by the end of the marathon and just stood next to their tables. The finish was also a mind trick. It looked like it would be under the start banner up the little hill. But when you got to the top of the hill someone said its just down at the bottom by the flags. But when you got down to the bottom of the hill you had to make a left turn down the red carpet to the finish. Which was actually quite pretty.
There was no clock and my watch had died so I had no idea what time I got. Someone from my unit told me I got 2nd place female and I told her she must be crazy. She then pointed to the results board which did indeed list me as 2nd place.
Shortly after I got called to the stage area and there was an awards ceremony where we actually got to get up on the podium. I got a huge check for 600 KD which is like $2000! They also gave us flowers and another medal. Unfortanately we had to turn in the big check in exchange for a paper one.