See, there's just no more money left. Upon finally hitting Nome, he planned to sell most of his dogs and all his gear and get on with his life—however long that is—by flying to El Paso and seeing the 24-year-old son and the five-month-old granddaughter he has never met, by fixing the holes in his roof, by defrosting. "Do you know I've never once stood on a sandy beach?" he said.
Goosen didn't do this to get his picture in the paper. He runs from attention. There was only one thing he wanted when the race was over: the red lantern that goes to the last-place finisher. "I want to set that on my fireplace mantel so one day my grand-kids can look at it and say, "Lookit there! Grampa really did finish the damn thing!"
So, on Monday, a hunched-over hero too tired to quit finally mushed the 1,161st mile into Nome, but not so you'd notice. The streets were quiet, the race headquarters mostly closed and the banquet long over. Goosen didn't get the red lantern—he had the bad luck to beat two others to the line—but just finishing made him feel like it was a greater glory than Swingley's.
Hell, maybe it was.