temperament is kindly among friends, but he exhibits a certain perverse
pleasure in keeping his listeners, particularly people he doesn't know well,
off balance, as when he spoke the day before the race of the new sport he had
invented: Disorienteering. "If you follow the trail, you're disqualified;
if you go where anyone else goes, you're disqualified, as you are if you find
one of the checkpoints on purpose. The only way to win is to get completely,
at such talk was Harvey Shultz, 44, of Clawson, Mich. A grizzled machinist with
the rock-hard torso of a boxer, Shultz had run for less than two years. He, and
27 others, belonged to the "adventure" category of entrants who were
entitled, when intrigued by a sugar mill or a flea market, to turn off their
digital timers while they explored and to restart them when they pressed on,
thus keeping their own unique system of elapsed time. The rest of us were in
the competitive division, which meant that every second we were on the road was
added to our accumulated time.
After seven miles
of our first day's run, we stopped to gulp a cool drink from the hose of the
Church of Saints Peter and Paul overlooking tranquil Waimea Bay. The pink
church tower shaded us, and from within—it being Sunday—we heard the sweet
strains of hymns. For Shultz, this temptation was irresistible. After drinking,
he knocked on the church door and asked admission.
"But you need
a shirt," whispered the usher, staring at Shultz' attire, which consisted
solely of soaked yellow shorts with red hibiscus flowers on them.
running, man," he said. "My things are miles from here."
and Shultz was given a shirt. At least it used to be a shirt. Now its buttons
were gone, along with its sleeves. It was a little cape, actually, but it
served, and Shultz sat through the remainder of the mass beatifically sweating.
When he came out, the usher insisted he take the sodden thing with him.
By this time the
rest of us had run through the sleepy little town of Haleiwa and on past steamy
sugarcane fields, the heat rising from the road, to our first day's finish at
Mokuleia Beach Park. After our tents had been erected on a lawn covered with
the tiny shards of ironwood cones, Scaff looked out over the eastern bay,
breathing in the view of the green land we had crossed. "It's like the
outer islands, isn't it?" he said, pointing to the minute pink tower of
Shultz' church, nearly lost in the distance.
been on insulin since he was five," Schaffer said suddenly. "He's lived
much longer than almost any other juvenile diabetic." Shaffer confessed
admiration for the man's brute strength. "If he seems aggressive or
eccentric, I believe it's because he's living every day as if it were his
We were splendidly
cared for. Gil and Tippy Dias, a middle-aged couple, were children of the sea,
she from Tonga, he from Hawaii. They saw to our feeding. Every evening Gil
gathered a few good swimmers and tugged 100 feet of delicate gill net into
position outside the surf or reef. At dawn he brought in the fish, which later
would be broiled and served with our dinner.
A dozen of us were
subjects in a medical study being conducted by Dr. Rudy Dressendorfer of the
University of California at Davis and Charles Wade of Tripler Army Hospital.
Blood and urine would be taken at dawn on eight selected mornings to determine
from our enzyme and hormone responses whether these 130 miles per week of
hot-weather running were strengthening us or eating us away. Assisting
Dressendorfer and Wade was University of Hawaii biology student and
cross-country runner Becky Russell—blonde and tan—whom Henderson immediately
dubbed the Race Bunny. It was a role she accepted, she said archly, "only
to prove that an ardent feminist can have a sense of humor." Indeed she had
one, with a bit of an edge to it. "Do you mean," she said with a pout
as we milled around before the start, "that this is the last day I get any
of you guys fresh?"