Or, “How My Two-Hour Run Turned into Over Three Hours Away from Home.”
I woke up and saw this for the weather forecast this morning:
I thought to myself, “Cloudy doesn’t sound too bad and I can handle Light Rain. The wind is a little much, but I’ll head out and see what it feels like.” I wore my compression socks, a skirt, a tank top, arm sleeves, gloves and a hat – for a normal 58 degrees this would have been way too much clothing, but I worried that the wind would make it seem colder.
Within the first two miles, the gloves came off and the sleeves were pushed down – there was barely any rain and I lucked into a cross-wind, so it felt nice and balmy out. Yay, the running gods were smiling on me and obviously, this run was going to be easy-peasy!
Or not. Right around three miles, I screeched to a halt. Hello, big unleashed dog! I looked around, but there was no owner in sight and now I realized that this poor baby looked scared. I took a step toward him and he bolted off across a major (three lanes in each direction) street. I watched him for a bit and he trotted with such purpose that it looked like he was heading home. I hoped he knew where he was going and I started running again. Well, not two minutes later, there he was at my side again. He was wearing a collar, but it didn’t have any tags on it. He didn’t stay with me very long before he darted into the street again, back to where he’d been before. At this point, I knew I needed to help him out, so I crossed over to the median to get him.
The median has a bit of a rise, and as I got closer to my new buddy, I finally understood why he’d been leading me out there. There was another dog, lying in the road, who’d obviously been hit. She was still alive, but couldn’t get up to move out of the street. Oh, man, the sight of her broke my heart.
Buddy and I ran across the street yet again to the parking lot of a grocery store where I desperately flagged down a really nice man with a cell phone. Why, oh why didn’t I have mine on me today? He called Animal Control and explained where we were. While he was on the phone, a car stopped near the dog in the street, so I ran back out to see if he was the owner of the two dogs. He wasn’t, but he took the injured dog into his truck and said he would take her home and help her out until Animal Control showed up. He gave me his phone number and I went back to Buddy, who was now cozied up in the nice man’s trunk (not by invitation, by the way. The nice man was putting his groceries away and Buddy hopped in)!
It took quite awhile for Animal Control to get there, and in the meantime at least three other people had stopped to help. The Animal Control officer easily gained Buddy’s trust and assured us all that she would do what she could to reunite both dogs with their owner. I really hope their story has a happy ending.
By the time I finally got on the road to finish my run, my legs had stiffened up and I was so cold that my fingers and toes were numb. I considered bagging it and going home, but I really wanted to finish what I started, so I kept going. The rain had been picking up while I was waiting for Animal Control, and within a few miles it was really coming down. I enjoy running in the rain, so this wasn’t a big deal. Ahhh, but when I turned around at the halfway point, I realized that I hadn’t been running with a crosswind so much as a tailwind and now that full 18 mph gust was in my face! I had to hold on to my hat while I ran and the wind whipped the headphones right out of my ears more than once. Needless to say, the second half of my run was significantly slower than the first half!
In the end, I managed 14.28 miles in three and a half hours. Ha, ha! Thankfully, only about 2 hours of that was actually spent running.
So how was your run today??