Weighed down by a proper English breakfast, we schlepped ourselves to the start line of the world-famous Santa Dash. After all, we were in it to win it.
|Even the grump stepped up his Christmas cheer for the occasion|
To our left there was a group of St Nick's warming up while to our right Claus was putting the lead on one of his two reindeer. Over in the far corner was a distinctly young looking Nicky, lunging backwards and forward, clearly determined to give us four Nicks a run for our money. On the right was a group or rowdy Nicholases (?!) preparing a backpack contraption filled with what smelled like mulled wine. With hindsight we really should've made friends with them as they had the most fun during the race, carolling their way along the course as we were to discover later on.
|Vixen and Rudolph!|
Shortly before 10:30, we made our way to the start line, holding on tightly to one another so as to avoid losing each other in a sea of red. There was no trumpet or shot or rendition of jingle bells to announce the start, but suddenly the Santas and Nicks in front of us started trodding. That's right, there was no shooting out of the blocks, that was made impossible by our red running trousers provided by the organizers, who were clearly expecting a bunch of giants as we each got a pair in XXXL.
While Cathy's Nick was holding on to his trousers in an attempt to stop them from sliding down, I was fumbling with my belt to prevent my oversized jacket from flying off. About a mile into the race we'd finally found our stride and fell into a nice and comfortable trot along the Brighton and Hove seafront. We were passing Santas and Clauses left and right and were passed by Nicks and Nicholases along the way. We do believe that most of them were impostors but think we may have spotted the one real deal along the way. Unfortunately that photographic evidence lies with Cathy-Claus and I do hope she'll share it before too long.
At about the halfway mark, which we reached in a record time of roughly 15 minutes, the hot and botheredness began to take over. Clearly, wearing leggings, a tank top, a long sleeve top, a jacket and a headband underneath a Santa outfit is a bit of overkill. After all, if it keeps the big guy warm, why wouldn't it do the same for us?! And he doesn't even run in his but has some poor reindeer pulling him all over the place. Eventually we ripped off our hats, aware that our Santa impostoring was now more easily visible. But it was that or overheating. Now, if we'd been running around the North Pole, it would've been a different story.
|Last medal-haul of the year|
Approaching the finish, Cathy-Claus and I decided to give the boy-Clauses a run for their money. With roughly 100 metres left, we switched from Santa-trot into Santa-dash mode and were off! On the way, we managed to beat Claus, the Weihnachtsmann and Père Noël. Then again, they were much older and less real than us, so had a clear disadvantage.
Chuffed with our performance, we rewarded ourselves with hot drinks and cake, while beginning to plot how to crush the Easter bunny and his mates in the spring.