That, my friends, is the story of my life.
So I've decided to train for the Charlottesville 1/2 marathon in April. The reasons are these: I loved feeling large and in charge when I trained for Richmond, it'll be springtime in Virginia, I ran 6 miles last week and felt that runner's charge--I ran like the wind, and I need some major physical outlet right now.
Yesterday I set out to run 8 miles on the W&OD trail (it wasn't until after that Lindi told me there have been quite a few rapes on the trail in broad daylight. Yikes! Anyone want to run with me? Luckily there are a few other trails in the area...). I parked at Columbia Pike and ran a little over 3 1/2 miles, almost ready to turn around, when I discovered that my car key had fallen out of my pocket. Gulp. What do you do?
I turned around and ran back, my eyes scouring the trail the whole way, stretching my brain to remember where I had readjusted my Ipod in the same pocket, where I stopped to take off my layers, where I ran past two bright red cardinals and, of course sketchy people (mixed in with a lot of normal people, too). No key.
My imagination started running away. Someone must have found a random Honda key in the middle of the path, and found a random lone Honda parked at the trailhead. Stolen car. (not as cool as Deana's car stolen out of her driveway by Nazi-terrorists in Sandy, Utah! The police recovered it and left the cds the skinheads left in her car. Lucky.) No... lucky me. My car was still there. A giant phew!
But now what to do? I had my Ipod and that's it. No phone, no house key, no water, nothing. I had no choice but to run home--another 3 miles. By this time I was beat. It was cold--37 degrees, and my sweat was freezing. Once I got home, I didn't have a key to get in. Again lucky--we have a spare in the shed, but I couldn't remember the combination. Lucky--I remembered the numbers, just not in the right order. My hands were a little shakey and I was cold, but finally I got in. I raced inside and called sweet Lindi who drove me to my car. Still there. Lucky that I have a spare key. Now I need to find a place to copy a car key. And hope that it's not a million dollars.
But wait! That's not all! A much more pleasant unexpected surprise... Randall and I stopped by the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center at Catholic University. I'd always wanted to go. Fascinating. Mostly photographs and sculpture and artifacts from the Pope, but also some interesting interactive exhibits about Catholicism and religion in general. The best part was that we walked in on the opening of an art exhibit, complete with a jazz concert in the rotunda and a deluctable spread of exhibit-opening food upstairs. Who knew? That chicken saute, shrimp, and mini key lime pies sure hit the spot on a rainy, exhausting afternoon.
That and Slumdog Millionaire. Complete despair, hard work and ingenuity and perseverance, and beautiful, life-changing hope. And amazing Indian dancing.
It's all about the surprise. Or tender mercies. However you look at it. But it's worth the look.