Saturday, December 30, 2006

Saturday Taper Run

In spite of the dire warnings from my friends at, this morning turned out to be just fine for running. The sky was overcast, with streaks of darker gray, like a striped blanket, but no rain.

My foot was a little sore, and I don’t think a mostly-concrete run did me any favors. But it was so nice to get out there on my old routes again! And it was only for 12 miles. It’s taper time, after all.

I came upon an unusual sight on Memorial Drive. I was about a mile outside the loop, trotting along past the huge fancy houses, with traffic zipping along to my left, when I saw a flock of birds on the sidewalk up ahead of me. As I got nearer it became obvious that they weren’t pigeons, crows, or any other type of urban bird. They were too big for that. But what kind of birds would be flocking on a sidewalk in front of a ritzy mansion under construction, next to a busy four-lane road?

I got closer, and the dominant one in the flock took a few steps toward me, while a more timid one hopped off the curb into the street. Bad move. I didn’t want it getting hit by a car, so since the circular drive of the house was available, I walked around. The dominant bird and I exchanged suspicious looks while the rest of the flock clucked.


I’m still not sure what type of birds they were. Some houses around here have peacocks, but these clearly were not peahens. They looked a little like wild turkeys, but were the wrong color. I think they were guinea fowl, or something closely related. Just what they were doing on the sidewalk in a rich neighborhood alongside a busy road is anyone’s guess.

A little later I ran past the roadside garden I’ve mentioned here before. Cabbages were doing well, I noticed, and there were a few grapefruits still ripening in the highest branches of the grapefruit trees nearby. This reminded me of an odd sight from a few days ago. I was driving through a very poor area where I swear only hope and imagination were holding the houses together. And would you believe, there were orange trees full of ripe oranges, all rotting on the tree! Uh, yeah. While I don’t agree that everyone is capable of pulling themselves up with no one’s bootstraps but their own, still. . . Come on, people! Free healthy food! Right there in your own stupid yard!

What’s wrong with some people?

Anyway, my third cool sighting of the day was a geyser. Okay, it was a broken water main, but the water was spraying nearly two stories into the air like Old Faithful, or like something you’d expect to see in an over-the-top Las Vegas hotel lobby. All it needed was pretty colored lights around it. With so much water being lost, you’d think the city would be all over it, but apparently not. There wasn’t a repair vehicle anywhere in sight.

So that was today’s run. I saw Mary for a massage on Thursday, so my legs were still recovering and a little heavy. But I was just so glad not to have to do a gym workout. I need to save my mental stamina for the last few workouts of my taper, when I’ll be doing a lot of time on the elliptical machine.

This has been a good week off for me. I’ve taken care of some errands, done some running along the bayou, done some writing and blogging (still taking email addys for anyone wanting access to my new writing blog), and just generally catching up on things. I got the fabulous news tonight that the university will be closed on Tuesday due to the federal holiday honoring President Ford, so that makes me a happy camper. An extra free day, followed by just a 3-day work week! I’ll also be taking off the Friday before the marathon, and the day after the 'thon is MLK day, which we have off. So it looks like I won’t be fully back into the grim weekly grind until the fourth week of January, which suits me fine.

And to close this post on a worrisome note, Dan is sick. I’m trying not to completely freak out, but it’s a chest cold, and for the last two years in a row, I’ve gotten bronchitis at exactly this time of year. If I had someplace else to live right now, I'd go there. Really. I swear he better not get me sick before my Birthday Marathon. I’ll have to kill him or divorce him. Maybe both.

Recent Workouts
Tuesday: 5.5 mile run – bayou trails
Wednesday: 6 mile run – bayou trails
Thursday: 45 minute spin
Friday: 30 minute elliptical
Saturday: 12 mile run


pacatrue said...

Maybe you can wrap him up in saranwrap and then spray him down every few minutes with Lysol. I don't know what it would do for your marriage, but he'd avoid you for a while.

bunnygirl said...

You owe me a new keyboard, Paca! LOLOL!

From Here to There said...

Oh no! Keep your hands washed, and for god sakes, stay away from him!! :)

What an interesting run! I love surprising runs like that! Regarding the oranges in the trees, I've never tasted one off a tree before! I'd kill for that! I know... run back to the tree and gobble up everything you can. The Vit C may keep that cold away!

CactusFreek said...

Gee i wish intoresting things would happen on my walking route!
Did you end up finding out what those birds were?
Don't get sick. Take every precaution you can before those airborne little bastards get to you!

Spider63 said...

A great description of your run. I really enjoy running with you!