Gayatri Datta, Rebecca Rosenberg, and Barry Smith plan to run this Thursday 4th of July morning from Candy Cane City at 7am, so about half an hour earlier I set out from home to meet them. Like yesterday I divert through the National Park Seminary to orbit the lovely Mermaid Fountain. I also pause to take photos of other statuary in the NPS. Then it's time to accelerate to make sure I get to the rendezvous on time. Gayatri texts me at 6:59, just as I arrive. We laugh together as I round the corner and text my reply from line-of-sight.
After a few minutes Rebecca and Barry appear, and we set off upstream, the direction I just came from. Two big deer cross the trail in front of us, near where I saw one earlier. When we get to the base of the Mormon Temple Hill the others prefer to take the less-steep way to the top, along Old Spring Rd, in spite of my arguments that gravity is a conservative force and it doesn't matter which way we go. A chipmunk on the curb dashes away from my foot. Rebecca and I run ahead and have a splendid conversation about life and training and challenges. Rabbits eye us warily. I run with Gayatri down the hill as we chase the other two. More runners and cyclists appear now and pass us along the trail.
Rebecca and I sprint ahead to the Rays Meadow water fountain and then await our friends. At the traffic triangle on Meadowbrook Lane Rebecca and Barry wonder were a path eastwards leads. After they return to their cars I follow that path on my jog home, and discover it simply goes a block and terminates at the dead-end Abilene Dr between the houses. Mystery solved! In the final half mile along Warren St a young man with jarhead crewcut and "Marines" on his shirt is walking a large dog. "It's too hot to wear it," I tell him, waving the singlet wrapped around my left arm, "but this is a Marine Corps Marathon shirt!" He smiles.
^z - 2013-07-22