Home Up Next

Our Story

Here are our individual versions of the day we met.

His Story

I wanted to make sure there would be enough time for me to park. My son, Savi, and I were going to participate for the first time in the L.A. Marathon Acura Bike Tour. As we were heading west on Hollywood Boulevard, we began to see some bicyclists peddling their way to the starting line. Hurriedly, I found parking right on Hollywood Boulevard at a cyclist-friendly $10. We unloaded the bikes and made them ready for the ride, a short time later we were but another pair of cyclists peddling towards the front of the Chinese Theatre. 

We arrived about 4:30 in the morning, and even then there were thousands of people already waiting. My son and I stood in the center of the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Orange, the street immediately west of the theatre, not far from the starting line. The street lamps were weak against the growing throng, as the light seemed to be absorbed by the people and never touched the ground. The sun would still be dormant for another hour or so. You could not help but to look around. The steady drone of background conversations steadily increasing, you saw police, guardsmen, officials, and people. Later I would find out there were around 11,000 people there that morning.

I saw people concentrating on their task ahead. Others were in raucous conversation with friends, while some did last minute checks on their bicycles. I saw crazy hats, tandem bikes, people dressed in sweats, some in running clothes. I continued my 360-degree view and saw all manner of people in all manner of dress. I was about to turn to my son and say something and suddenly the thought vanished as surely as if it had never existed.

I saw her.

Time seemed to stop, or, at the very least, slow down. A surreal scene began to appear before me. The sound of the crowd seemed to get muffled, like the brightness of a spotlight seen through a thick fog. The crowd darkened and became more deeply covered in shadows. The street lamp closest to me ignored everyone around me and concentrated its soft light on her. She stood there in her resplendent smile. She was holding her bicycle dressed in sneakers, black cycling shorts, and a gray sweater. She wore a simple white helmet, beneath which her auburn hair ended in a parallel line to the ground, half way down her neck. She was smiling. A smile such as I have never seen. It radiated a warmth, a spirituality, a peacefulness in a way that was totally and absolutely calming, and it drew me in. It took a while for me to get the courage to speak to her. It was 4:45 in the morning, Sunday, March 3rd, 1996.

Her Story

The wind hit my face as I peddled towards the start line of the LA Bike Tour.  I was ecstatic. If I couldn’t run it, then this was the next best thing.  My injured ankle still bothered me, but nothing could take away from the satisfaction of being there…in the moment.

I reached a group of cyclists who were clustering yet leaving gaps where I could easily maneuver to weave through the river of helmets I saw before me.  Finally, I stopped.  Not knowing what to expect, I stood there looking around, stretching, and trying to keep warm.  For a moment I felt almost intimidated by all the cyclists around me who had fancy bikes and special clothing on or basically just looked like they knew what they were doing.

Nevertheless, I was happy to be there, partaking in the energy of the day. Directly in front of me was a teenager with headphones on who talked to a man next to him.  I briefly looked at both of them and registered the older man with a goatee to be a relative…father, uncle, friend… rather mean and evil looking by the way.  However, not even his stare could take away from this spiritual connection I was feeling.

I never saw him approach me but sometime later this same man, the evil-looking one with gadgets on his handlebars, asked me something about my bike.  Hmmm?  We talked a little, laughed a little -- he also kept an eye on my bike when I went into the Roosevelt Hotel to go “p”owder my nose (thank you for sharing) -- and then the next thing I knew the bike tour started.  We all rode down Hollywood Blvd. that morning with the wind in our faces.

Unforeseen forces, like my drippy nose, made me wipe my face continuously on the sleeves of my sweatshirt (thank you for sharing), yet I was carefree and having a blast. Oh, what a sight I must have been that morning.  Hmmm?  Wait a minute.  Where’s the evil-looking man with the goatee?  Hmmm. Hmmmm! He’s still here next to me…he never left.

Updated on 08/26/2005.