Monday, December 7, 2009


If you like to camp, you'd like our house.  Summer or winter, it feels much more like the out-of-doors than the homes of most people we know.  Last winter, when some friends were discussing a dip in temperatures, I said, "yeah, we turned our thermostat up to 62 this morning."  I'm sure my mother's friends wonder why she comes to visit, self-induced elder abuse.  But it's no worse than going shopping in the summertime, when goose pimples cover our almost naked bodies because some people can't live without air conditioning.

This morning I wanted to stay in bed, knowing I was as warm as I'd be until I crawled back in tonight.  Then I remembered the weather report had predicted the coldest day so far this Fall.  A great day for a run, I thought, if I could shrug aside the temporary discomfort of getting going.  Dress appropriately and you're master of the weather.

I headed out with my wick-fit artificial fiber, double gloves and polypropylene cap.  The air tasted fresh, rouged my cheeks and offered clear snow-covered vistas.  Sweating soon prompted me to roll my jacket and tie it around my waist.

While daydreaming on Sallings Mountain Road I scratched some frozen water and barely managed to stay upright by using a few back muscles like the child I no longer am.  The rest of the run was uneventful until I stopped dead in Stoner Hollow where a creek had risen over the road.  It was up last week, too, but I ran through because the temperature was 55 degrees.  Today, at 25, I balked.  Detour.

As a child, I loved that unusual and exciting word, time to sit up and pay attention.  We're taking a tour, off the highway.  Look at all the people doing the same thing, like a party.  Hey Dad (the driver), isn't this great?  "I hope it doesn't last long," he would say.  Dad, this is much more fun than the boring interstate.

I felt the same this morning -- inconvenienced like Dad and glad for something different like the miniature me.  I should have expected something when I noticed the third person checking his mailbox on a Sunday.  Yesterday was one of those days that keep folks inside.

Virginia said "detour" reminds her of a group of musicians reaching a colon at a double bar.  Whoa!  Eyes race backwards, searching for a mirrored colon.  Quick, there it is.  Phew!  Just in time.  Like a recipe, next time they'd better read all the way through before beginning.

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