Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Dark and Stormy Night

Today: 8
Present: 719
Count: 102

First rain in months, perfect night for a run.

Up Vermont and down the north slope, a quiet suburban evening and I had the streets to myself. I passed another runner by Jackson Park and she smiled, as thrilled as I was to be out in the rain.

There is something magical about running in the rain, something innately contemplative, as if the drops carry memories of runs long since past. The air was warm, despite the showers, and when I hit Terry Francois and turned towards the ballpark, I marveled at the lights and music coming from AT&T.

As I neared, I saw crowds of umbrella-carrying hipsters pouring into the stadium. Some dedication I thought, and they must have been thinking the same thing about me as I cruised by, around the back and along the piers and out Embarcadero.

I pulled away and the crowds lessened, then disappeared. I didn't have a distance in mind this evening, and the idea of just running fleetingly ran through my mind. Could I make it all the way around? Four miles in, I'd only have 20 left. But not tonight.

I resolved to turn around only when I saw another soul out in the storm. The drops fell more quickly now, soaking the boardwalk. I ran on, half-hoping I wouldn't pass anyone so I wouldn't have to turn around. I passed a biker, equally drenched, riding casually by.

The wind now my foe when I flipped around and headed home, I tucked my chin into my chest and pushed back towards the ballpark, around the back again and past the rushing concert-goers. I glanced into the stadium from right field and saw the female singer belting out her lines. A few dedicated fans stood in front, probably the best seats they'd ever have thanks to the rain.

Back up 20th Street and down the other side, I cruised home, not wanting the run to end. I coasted to a stop and saw the steam rise patiently off my shoulders and disappear into the misty air.

After showering and getting warm, I checked the weather: can't wait until the next rain.


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