Monday, September 21, 2009

Wulaba Motivates ADK Marathoners in Schroon Lake

Volunteer Tony Kostecki jumped into to play with Wulaba!
While Wulaba Drum leader, James Gann, was in Africa doing an intensive training, the skeleton crew of Karen Kan, Christina and Dusty Grant, made their way yesterday to Schroon Lake for the annual Adirondack Marathon.
It was a chilly morning at about 40 degrees when we arrived so everyone was thankful they brought layers. Wulaba was stationed at mile 11, 22 and at the finish line having short break between drumming session. The first ten minutes were a bit challenging as our hands were cold and a bit stiff (karen had gloves on at first!), but we warmed up quickly.
As marathoners ran, walked or biked by, most gave us a wave, a thumbs up, a smile and a, "THANK YOU!" as we drummed them up the next hill. Given the 5:30AM wake-up call for us, I can say it was well worth it to see the difference we made!
One woman, as she ran by said in an incredulous voice, "Who ARE you guys? You are incredible!" We were surprised but obviously thrilled with the comment. My guess is that the drums reverberated among the trees and rocks to be heard for well over a mile along the course.
One man on bicycle (and later on foot) actually slowed to a stop to ask where he can buy an djembe. Luckily we had Wulaba cards for John Paul. So we hope we'll be hearing from him soon!
Once we made the move from the forest to the highway, we were in full sun and layers of clothing were peeled off. In fact, we all got a sun tan! Much to our surprise, we attracted another drummer to play with us! ADK Marathon volunteer, Tony Kostecki, general director of Seagle Music Colony, joined us for KukuKase, Kakilambe and Triba after a quick 10 second lesson from Karen.
We met our dance teacher, Johnna MacDougall at the finish line where her and her band of happy massage therapists were doing their thing for all the athletes. We also got to say a quick hello to Stuart Paton from Burlington Taiko who was also on hand with his group drumming around the last corner before the finish line.