March 20, 2009

The secret edge of the world

Penguin invasion!
Originally uploaded by Straymuffin
Ran today through great wet blobs of snow, which vanished as soon as they touched ground. A classic Spring snow, a joy, a circus, a happy jolt. I love to run in weather, especially wind, rain, and snow, because I feel invincible. The elements swirl around me I'm warm and don't care about how I look. Fighting me or speeding me, the wind keeps me cool and embraces me. The dense swarm of snowflakes became a widow's veil shadowing the beginnings of Spring in Prospect Park: the budding daffodils and sprays of green on some of the bushes. I felt I was nearly floating, at the farther, weirder reaches of this world. A friend wrote yesterday about a penguin who had been mimicking and mocking her on her run through Antarctica last week. She reported strafing Skuas, calving icebergs, and neon ice. Yesterday was a rest day for me, therefore naturally a day of unfulfilled longings, and when I read her wrapup of the Antarctic Marathon (sadly no link, it was a lovely description) I wanted nothing but to necklace the earth with my footprints.

I run, I don't know why, with the all the fervor of a new convert. Running helps me trace the outlines of the knowable world, to measure off time, distance, and the margins of injury.

Improbably, I've upped for two races this weekend, a Prospect Park 5K (untimed, and which I'll run gentle) and a Central Park 4-mile. Not sure yet how I'll run 4-mile, but I'll follow it up with a CP loop to complete my long run. Then I meet my wife and daughter to find some nice curtains for the baby's room. Every windbeaten explorer eventually returns to the hearth.

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