We were listening to the news as we drove into the rising sun. A new shooting. Then, follow up from the previous day’s school shooting. Jihadists doing their cancer imitation and trying to kill the whole world. I reached up and turned the radio off.
“The news is so depressing sometimes,” said The Chef.
I said, “Not sometimes. All the time.”
She said, “I just want to focus on our family. The kids. You. My cooking. I want to enjoy the joy I can enjoy. You know?”
I got a big smile on my face. She looked over at me.
“Please don’t write that down.” She started to laugh.
“Come on. No way. It’s too good not to.”
We’ve talked about this concept a lot. There’s no reason to invite bad stuff into your life. The bad stuff will show up in your life uninvited, at some point.
But for today, we focused on the beautiful sunrise coming up over the empty road. Shelley, The Chef Chauffeur dropped me and Leo off at Reeves Road where we finished yesterday. Leo looks at me and barks. I reach up to my wrist, hit the start button on the GPS watch, it beeps, and he takes off like a shot. Pavlov.
The big dramatic things are over on this run, I think. Smaller scale delights from now on. We passed Reeves Falls, which was a little rivulet through some boulders. We really enjoyed the open hardwood stands. Now you can see a quarter mile, without the leaves. We passed a guy with a couple springer spaniels. Toward the end of the run we ran into a couple who had a pit bull and some other breed of dog. I was too focused on the pit bull to notice what the other dog was. I got Leo to heel and we moved on. Naturally, the car in the parking lot had a “My pit bull is family” sticker. I guess you can’t just own the dog. You have to make a statement. I guess pit bulls can be like family. Much like the way Hannibal Lecter is somebody’s family member while he’s eating somebody’s face.
Even at noon, the shadows are long enough to cause flicker vertigo. Helicopter pilots can get it when the flickering shadows of the sun through the chopper blades cause them to get disoriented. I feel that way as the shadows cause a strobe light effect on my eyes as I run perpendicular to them. Makes my eyes water.
We found an old cut for a former railroad. Then we found a real railroad and ran over the spilled taconite pellets. I took a picture of Leo on top of a rock ridge. Reminded me of a scene from that movie, “Fantastic Mr. Fox.” Leo is indeed a beautiful creature.
We crossed the Stewart River. I considered following it down to Betty’s Pies. Then we made it down to Lake County Demonstration Forest, which I wrote about here. We continued across country, which was flat. One thousand feet of climbing in 15 miles today, the same amount as I did in 2/3 the distance yesterday. No complaints here.
We stumbled past an old mine pit near the Knife River. We later crossed over the scenic moss covered boulders of another tributary of the Knife. Later we found a little waterfall of McCarthy Creek, which eventually joins the Knife. I’ve tried to find steelhead in the Knife, with no luck. But I have crossed the 5 mile mark of Grandma’s Marathon ten times at the Knife River. Always fun to see the headwaters of these rivers.
I tried to stay better hydrated today and it paid off. I drank twice as much coffee prior to leaving. I emptied my Camelbak with an hour to go in the run. And I drank a quart of water that I left in the truck. Much better recovery than yesterday. Toward the end of the run, I had one of those rare experiences where I felt no temperature. I felt no soreness. I felt like I could run forever. I had no thoughts in my head. The sun was flickering against my eyes, shadows working their late season, north country magic.
Enjoy the joy you can enjoy. (Coming soon to a T-shirt near you!)
Today’s Data: North Shore Shmo: Leg 38
Consider a donation to the Wounded Warrior Project via North Shore Shmo!
T-Shirt of the Day:
I just grabbed a shirt this morning. Didn’t think much about it. Then, as I was sitting here sorting through the pictures. I realized the shirt from Haleiwa on the North Shore of Hawaii said it was from the North Shore. North Shore of Superior, North Shore of Oahu. Duh. Just crossed my mind. I got the shirt because I stood up for the first time on a surfboard at Puaena Point in Haleiwa. I saw sea turtles and rays swimming by me as I glided along the waves, sun shining over the green mountains. The minute I stood up for the first time, I finally understood why surfers lose their mind forever about the sport. Uncle Sam was paying for the trip to Hawaii. So I guess he’s not all bad.