It's been a long day.
The sun is out and the thermometer in the car driving back to Maryland says 82.
"Look at it!" Carlos says in a stage whisper as he's driving, pointing surreptitiously at the temperature reading, as if afraid it is going to disappear if he's too obvious about it.
I look over and laugh out loud. I had forgotten what those numbers looked like.
We're hungry. It's rush hour. We crossed the state line half an hour ago and thankfully are moving at a reasonable 30 mph for this region at this time. We discuss lunch/dinner...it's too late for lunch but too early for dinner, so whatever you would call that.
"Let's go to Brewer's!" we decide unanimously. It's our favorite bar in town.
Another half hour later we are swinging by our apartment so I can change into street clothes. I quickly stuff sneakers, tights, a sports bra and one of my technical tops into my gym bag as I run back out the door. It's too pretty out and we still have several hours of daylight left...I have no intention of returning home immediately after eating.
We sit in the bar area next to one of the floor-to-ceiling windows: it filters out the chill late afternoon air and only lets warm sunlight in.
I have the most amazing salmon and Carlos has an individual pizza. We are stuffed, but as Carlos pays the bill, I grab my gym bag, change into running clothes, and walk with him outside, where I give him a momentary kiss good-bye: he is going to go to his favorite record store while I go complete 3 miles.
"I'll meet you at the bandstand after," he says with a grin.
I laugh. The bandstand at the park is becoming a heavy player in my life these days. More on that in another post.
I slip my headphones on and click over to my SoundCloud app. There is a new song that I want to listen to.
If you can, I recommend listening to this song in the background while you read, as I had it on replay for this entire run.
Direct link so you can open it in a separate window is here.
I pick up a run as the music begins, winding my way through the late afternoon crowds around town, out to enjoy the warmth and the sun.
The crowds thin out as I reach the water and I turn left to follow it.
I turn my back to the sun and chase my shadow across the ground. The music pours over me and I lengthen my stride. It's like my body and the floor disappear and I'm floating above ground. There is no effort, only infinity.
I swing around the bridge at the far end of the canal and run towards the sun.
And I never want to stop.
The shadows are long beneath the radiance of the light.
"Now I see fire
Inside the mountain
I see fire
Burning the trees
And I see fire
I see fire
Blood in the breeze
And I hope that you remember me..."
|When reality is more beautiful than any photographic filter, you run towards it.|
|This guy was fishing under this stunning cherry blossom tree. The tree was afire...with light.|
|Everything was afire with light.|
|And the brand new grass was like the greenest velvet.|
|And everyone was out and about revelling in it.|
|And my heart pounded with the sheer joy of it.|
My legs had already been worked hard that morning. At 2.8 miles, they said, "Enough." I slowed to a walk and met Carlos at the bandstand.
We walked around the park one more time, just for the pure enjoyment of being outside, and he took his flip-flops off so he could walk barefoot on the grass. I grinned because I never said out loud how soft the grass looked...he saw it for himself.
And then we got in the car and got ice cream on the way home.
And we finished the day in a most ordinary way, setting up food and laundry for the rest of the work week.
I love this town. It is my town and there is no other like it.
|And this tripod foot-obsessed cat is also the cutest.|