I went on my last run before the 20K I’m running on Monday. Instead of meeting the group I opted to sleep a little later and run from home. The route I take from my front door has me weaving in and out of my neighborhood and along two main roads that run north and south from New Haven. I was conscious of everything around me, tried to take note of my surroundings while also noticing my breath and where each foot was landing. I gave thanks for my strong legs and body and where they were taking me.
The majority of people I came across were dog walkers. A man being pulled by a black and white puppy who was straining against his leash, sinking his nose into the weeds on the road side. His young daughter was pushing herself along on one of those scooters; her outfit and helmet were pink and she was talking, talking, talking. Not sure she noticed that dad was on his cell phone but I hope he or the dog were listening to her chatter. A couple with a black lab who seemed to be sniffing out a place to pee, the woman falling behind while the man walked ahead onto the grass with their pet. A woman with matching terriers, a leash in each hand. Two woman with a harmless looking yellow lab whose snout was encased in a leather harness.
I noticed a blue baseball hat with the MSN logo stitched onto it in the street near the curb. Cigarettes…there were empty packs, mostly Newport and Marlboro, there were smoked butts and for a stretch of about 25 feet along Hartford Turnpike there were full size, unsmoked, fully intact cigarettes scattered along the curb, near the yellow line and halfway in between. I wonder if someone decided to quit and tossed what was left of their pack out the window right then and there. I was sorry to see so much garbage along this road too. Coffee cups, fast food wrappers, beer bottles and cans, juice boxes, the list could go on. Some of the lawns I ran past were pristine and well cared for, landscaped with flowers, shrubs and grasses in an inviting welcome. Other lawns were more organic, bushes and trees reaching toward the sun in somewhat random directions. I passed other runners, who all smiled and said hello or gave a wave, cyclists and non-dog walking walkers. It was a great morning to get outside; comfortable temperature, no humidity and a slight breeze.
When I got home Bill and I sat on my deck and watched bees busy at work in my surrounding garden. I made eggs with tomato (from my neighbor’s garden) and avocado on toast, drank water and coffee and ate outside. We’re off to a picnic this afternoon where we’ll see some of our favorite people, not a bad way to kick off a long weekend.