Sunday I went running. This has been my regular “long run” day for over a year. But after an early February foot injury (what I thought was a stress fracture turned out to be an inflamed metatarsal joint) and a slow ramping back up to weekly mileages around 10 miles, I had once again slacked off from my runs for the last 2 weeks. Part of this was because Dan was out of town, and I was trying to take advantage of early hours during the week to get things done at work. Part of it was sheer laziness because I was on my own over the weekends and I spend my time doing other things like laundry or baking. Part of it was the fact that winter just won’t quit Chicago.
But Sunday I woke up and the sun was shining. Despite the fact that a winter storm was hitting us later in the afternoon, (nearly a week into official “spring”) I headed out for a 4 mile jog.
And it was amazing.
I smiled at dogs out for a Sunday morning romp in the park, I waved hello to other strangers out for their daily run, I even made some unofficial studies of how many abandoned pieces of winter clothing I encountered along the route (3 gloves, 1 hat). I heard Palm Sunday hymns being sung at one neighborhood church, their green stained glass windows humming with light. At another church, I made way for a nun, wrapped in a black scarf, who dashed outside to the parish bake sale table to check on the change box. At yet another, I watched some young entrepreneurs display ornately woven palms to church-goers as they left mass. I had forgotten it was Palm Sunday, and my run reminded me a little of the life going on around us even when we stop paying attention for a few moments.
I was so happy to encounter all of this on just a few miles of sidewalks. I love that I see such a range of people when I head out into my neighborhood, and they see me, or don’t see me, but we interact with each other in varying, often subtle ways. And I even love the fact that the second I walked into my door, it started snowing.
Happy springtime, everybody.