The day came and went without a hitch. I admit I was nervous, this being my first organized event (sort of, ish,) through the 501st and I didn’t want to besmirch their good name. I was fawning over Katherine, manager of the President’s Choice Cooking School at the Loblaws at Carlton and Church, thanking her every 2 seconds for the use of her room/office.
Katherine was utterly awesome. She didn’t have to give up her office for our duffel bags, or stick around until 4pm on a Sunday to wait until we were back and changed, but she did. She, ladies and gentlemen, is a TROOPER.
Why did I fawn? The YMCA over on Grovesnor, the 519 Community Centre and the support staff at the Toronto District School Board dismissed me with rude indifference when I approached them for loan of a change room for the day – in a couple cases, my emailed rejection responses sounded like the recipients had not bothered to read my initial emails. When Katherine so easily said yes, I was in a bit of shock at how nice she was. I will say that if I ever need use of any of the Y, the 519, or the TDSB, I will think twice. And you should all go enroll in a class at the PC Cooking School (they do Sushi!)!!
In the end, it seems I had no worries at all, thanks largely to the seasoned troopers that had signed up for the event. These guys were on time, ready and entertaining, even after the LONG walk they had to endure in their outfits. I did hear one say that “it wasn’t every day he gets to walk up Yonge Street in full gear” so I think they had a good day!
In the end, we raised over $2300 for ACT. And I thank all of you readers for putting up with my calls for money over the last month.
I felt the day was a bit under-attended in comparison to previous years, but I think it was due to the short rain fall just before the walk. That or people just don’t care much anymore. Global TV was the only news outlet to put the walk on their main, 6pm news while CP24 and CityTV did mention the walk briefly on their mega-everything-gets-largely-ignored-OCD-news-channels. Also, the walk was in direct competition with the Bowel Cancer walk, somewhere else in the city.
Still, the message got out there. I did have to explain to someone why Star Wars characters were at the event. “I’m sure someone out there infected with HIV liked Star Wars,” I said, in creepy past-tense.
Today, I am sore. Like “old guy” kinda sore. I’m not 21 anymore.
Again, to all who helped, my heartfelt thanks.