feb 15/RUN

2.75 miles
river road, south/edmund, north
-7 degrees/ feels like -10

Brr. Decided to go for it and run outside. Didn’t look too bad when I checked the forecast: low wind, bright sun. According to my watch, the wind is 2mph. I’m dubious. I felt a cold wind blowing in my face almost the entire run. It wasn’t a stiff wind, but it was more than a gentle breeze. Today felt uncomfortably cold, especially on my fingers. Still, it was nice to be out there. Was able to run right above the river. It’s all white, frozen, looking more like a snowy field than anything else.

Things I Remember Most

  • 2 different woodpeckers, with 2 different drumming sounds. 1. the sharp, rapid rat a tat tat on a hollow (or dead?) tree trunk and 2. a dull, slow thump thump thump on another tree.
  • The salt on the road kept tricking me–is it dried salt staining the road or tightly packed snow or slick ice? I don’t remember it ever being slippery but I do remember frequently mistaking salt for snow and snow for salt.
  • Only encountered 1 other runner the entire time, but saw a few walkers. I think every walker was with a dog.
  • I heard the trilling of a northern cardinal.
  • My eyes watered a lot, but didn’t freeze into icicles. Condensation froze on the inside of my sunglasses, making it hard to see my shadow ahead of me.
  • My toes weren’t froze but my fingers were; I had to ball up my hands inside of my gloves to warm them up. The empty fingers of my gloves flopped in the wind.

I wore many layers (from top to bottom):

  • a purplish-blueish-grayish hood*
  • an ugly black hat that fits/looks like a thick black swim cap*
  • a gray buff*
  • gray “sports dad” sunglasses
  • a olive-gray with lime green zippers outer jacket**
  • a purplish-blueish-grayish micro-fiber pullover (that has the hood) *
  • an orange thick running shirt
  • a lime sherbet green base layer shirt
  • 2 pairs of gloves: one black and designed for running, the other hot pink with white stripes, not designed for running or lasting–slowly one end is unraveling; I cut the loose thread every couple of runs
  • 2 pairs of black tights–one with pockets, one with zippers at the ankles and a drawstring**
  • a black running belt with a phone and my keys in it
  • 2 pairs of socks: one pair gray*, the other mis-matched–both white but one with a green logo and one with blue
  • gray (with a tinge of blue) running shoes

* running swag from a race
**inherited from Scott

Mostly, all of this kept me warm. The only parts of me that were really cold: my face (and my lungs?), and my fingers. My face stayed cold, but my fingers warmed up enough for me to take the hot pink gloves off.

a moment of sound

This very cold morning, while sitting in the front room at my desk, I could hear a low rumble. It rumbled and rumbled, rattling in the inside of my head, low and steady and unrelenting for at least 20 minutes. This sound was so low and quiet that I felt it more than I heard it. It was caused by a pick-up truck idling in front of a neighbor’s house two doors away and it was very irritating. I decided to open the front door and record the sound. My moment only lasted 16 seconds because it was too cold outside and because the truck was producing a lot of exhaust that was invading my lungs, making it hard to breathe.

Feb 15, 2021

Perhaps you don’t even notice the rumble? Maybe you just hear the birds, who don’t seem to be bothered. O, to be a bird who can ignore rumbling trucks and the bitter cold, and keep singing like it’s spring!