02 Apr Backroads Running: Birds, Blues, and Brunch
Recently, in order to avoid the bone-chilling gusty winds and cold temps, I have been running loopity-loops in protected areas. Today the early morning sunshine looked promising–promising that I might finally get out of town. 8 out and 8 back. No preplanned route. Today, I wanted to improvise and just go wherever the feet led. Running solo has definite advantages–you get to go wherever you like.
‘Stop Sign’ Game: Laugh if you want but I started my run with the ‘Stop Sign’ game. Run to the sign; don’t stop; look for the next one; carry on. Mindless. Eventually I got to the river road. BACKROADS looked good. Sunshine coming through the trees, some open areas blindingly bright. The warmth offset the chilly North wind. Cyndi Lauper, the BLUES and I bopped along together: ‘Down Don’t Bother Me’.
Heading down the trail the noisy BIRDS became deafening. (Couldn’t even hear my tunes.) Full blast chickadee-dee-dees, blue jay squawks, woodpecker drills–all competed with the outrageous raucous bullying of the crows. No sound from those turkey vultures circling ominously overhead. Could they sense I was starting to run on low? Rule: always carry extra energy in pocket. Momentary silence, return of my tunes–‘I Will Survive‘–reminded me I could tough it out.
That’s when I decided: no turning back. Absolutely spontaneous! Felt a bit daring really. I would just keep running and call home for a ride. Good idea except…no phone. (Didn’t bring it.) Who cares? I’ll think of something, figure out something. Even though there were no convenience stores, gas stations or businesses out here on the backroads I knew that there was the possibility of a ‘kind soul’ who might be sitting on their porch having coffee, (especially in this sunshine). Worse case scenario, walk back.
I came to the end of the dirt road and took a left turn. That’s when I saw them. Vehicles—LOTS, lining both sides of the road. My lucky day? An Auction?–that equals cell phones. But no, it was even better.
It was the morning of the BRUNCH–Annual Spring Pancake BRUNCH–at Pine Lake. People everywhere–families, kids, smiling, chatting, coming, going. (Sunshine and spring can do that.) The Hayride Wagon loaded with kids and oversized (comfy) hay bales looked inviting to my tired legs but I was on a mission–find a phone, get a ride home. Led by my nose, I followed the tempting smell of pancakes and maple syrup right to the Main Lodge. Rule: always carry a little extra cash
“Local call? There’s a phone right here on the wall”, she said. Dialled…no answer. Oh my. Started dialling again; felt her hand on my arm. “Don’t bother, we’re giving you a ride”. Not necessary. “But we are”. And that’s how it happened. Got in their vehicle for my ride homeward. At the river road, I hopped out, (their contact info in my pocket) and ran home. Long run on the BACKROADS, finished.
PS: We dropped by later for a short visit, to say a proper thank you. Notice the dinghy? Looks like my new friend could also rescue me if I were lost at sea. Amazing. Is it just me or do incredible, unimagined adventures await us when we get ourselves out the door? Today not only did I enjoy the freedom and fun of running the BACKROADS, I made new friends.
The kindness and generosity extended to me was incredibly overwhelming. For all of this and more, I am truly grateful.
P.P.S.: April 1 was my new friend’s birthday. And that was no April Fool’s joke.