2019-02-09 - Pause, Breathe, Yes

~14.1 mi @ ~14.1 min/mi

"Trick-or-treating?" the bus driver inexplicably asks Roadkill as he exits. Random strangers all morning compliment Slow-twitch on her cap. Why, we wonder? And whence the enigmatic sushi-like design on the jigsaw-tile found by the sidewalk?

"You're hot!" - "No, you're haaaaaaaaht!" - We practice faux Boston accents, give thanks for windbreakers and handwarmers, and yearn for additional layers as a gusty north wind and subfreezing temps cut through clothing and turn skin red. Starbucks coffee warms; the detour generates a 2.7 mile GPS bonus glitch. In front of St Elizabeth's Catholic Church we pause to admire a beautiful bronze sculpture, then explore the path through the woods and across the stream between Woodmont Country Club and Montrose Park. Sharp-eyed Slow-twitch spies two deer feeding in the brush.
sushi bear tile
caption"Oh, I can wait — at least 15 seconds!" Besides warmth and wakefulness, coffee prompts a search for facilities. After a gas-station-convenience-store pause we ramble onward, with no plans, no goals, no worries — only thankfulness for freedom, health, and the chance to see the universe in the company of a dear friend. Roadkill quotes the final "Calvin and Hobbes" comic strip: "It's a magical world. Let's go exploring!"
"See the face? And the bird inside the cat?" A bright mural on the side of The Terano apartment complex lures us across the road. And when a mysterious path through the woods beckons we climb the Veirs Mill Road high metal guardrail (ouch!) and discover a "Trail To Nowhere" aka the unfinished Twinbrook Connector (see [1] for history and details). We run its full length, then turn around. Slow-twitch compliments Roadkill as he overcomes his OCD aversion to backtracking. Along Rock Creek Trail we dash up the hills to prepare Slow-Twitch for upcoming races. Roadkill's pointy Merlin hat (thanks, Danger Man!) brushes against branches overhead. He feels a burst of vertigo, perhaps from dehydration. Slow-Twitch gently suggests strategies to help get his weight back down.Rockville Terano apartment mural
statues at St Elizabeths"Jaybird!" Suddenly, a familiar face appears heading upstream. After a pause for photos and fist-bumps, onward! At Grosvenor Metro we pass former homes of friends, share memories of times both happy and sad, and discover a flock of fresh artwork: bright totem poles alongside the parking garage. Some appear innocent; others seem to show Freudian subtexts. (Or is that just our naughty interpretation?) We give thanks for circles of loving friends, always there for us. Trail talk turns mindful as we analyze fear, the urge to take control of uncertainty, the challenge of not-responding to stress — and the benefit of breathing and pausing at the point of highest tension. So difficult, so Zen, sometimes so good ...

(trackfile) - ^z - 2019-03-05