An evening run. Because
the morning slipped
between a coffee cup
and God-knows-what.
And I need to run.

I’ve showered now and pulled on a wool bra and cashmere lounge pants. There’s nothing like cashmere lounge pants. I own one pair because I stumbled over them – misplaced in rack in an H&M- marked down to affordable.

Is this what it feels like to be wealthy? Wrapped in cashmere?

I had an angora sweater in high school. I bought it myself with the money I’d earned from my first job – selling hot dogs at the local rally-cross track. I knew it was out-of-place in my life: it shrank in the first wash.

But now. … Why don’t I always dress like hugs? I’m a grown woman and should be in full control of these things. I want to be the woman who empties her wardrobe and dresser drawers of all the fast fashion clothes, and fills them with nothing but quality fabrics in neutral colors that tell the world she definitely has all of her soft, yellow ducks in a row.

When I was a teenager we didn’t have ducks. But we had finches in bamboo cages in our mobile home. Some in the living room, some in the my mother’s bedroom in the back of the house. And they would sing to each other. Pitifully.

They make these small bamboo nests to put in the bamboo cages so finches will lay perfect little eggs. We had one hatch once. Have you ever seen a soft, naked, newly-hatched finch? It burns in your mind when it is dead on the newspaper tray at the bottom of the cage.

My point is… I’ve never had my ducks on a row.

These cashmere pants were marked “sleepwear”. Are there really women who sleep in cashmere? I sleep in cotton exercise pants that are too napped to wear in public anymore.

I feel guilty wearing cashmere around the house. It seems decadent. But they were marked “sleepwear” and I wonder if I wear them out (you know, feeling all elegant-like) people with think I’m an idiot for wearing my pj’s to dinner?

I wear them for yoga now. Kind of like dressing up for church. Not for the Holy Spirit, mind you – but for Buddhist idea that we should enjoy the pleasures of the present moment so long as we do so without clinging. And I have no illusion that these cashmere pants will survive the wash more than a few times.

At any rate. Here I sit in bed. Leonard curled beside me, dreaming of chasing hares – small, inaudible barks puffing his cheeks. I’ll have to wake him to send him to his own bed before I turn in for the night.

E. is offshore for a few more days. He may as well be on the moon. And only half the moon is visible tonight.

It’s been raining all week and the lake has flooded its usual banks. The bench roses weirdly from the water, and I stopped to take a photograph. For a moment I thought I’d stop and sit there for a while, watching the moon. But then a man came walking with his two schnauzers, and I was worried he’d think me insane.

And I was wearing my new shoes.

So… there’s that, at least: new, serious-ugly running shoes.

I’m that kind of woman.

I’ve been uneasy running alone in the mornings lately. It’s odd how this fear pops up now and then. I haven’t kept track of when this happens, and think it may well be that it always happens this time of year when it seems the world is suddenly dark at 6 am. Maybe it’s instinctive, and fine, and not paranoid at all to be uncomfortable as the earth so obviously shifts on its axis in relation to the light source.

I remind myself that the trees aren’t dying. They’re making way for new growth.

Odd that we talk about “spring cleaning” – when Autumn seems to be the season when nature sorts through what to keep and what to let go of.

I stopped to take a photograph and the bushes rustled behind me. Wind, or blackbirds, or even a squirrel.

I passed two people at the lake this morning. An older man walking, who diffused my fear with a “God morgen”. Which gave me the momentum to say, “God morgen” to the woman I later ran past farther along the trail. I realized how rare it is for us to greet each other here – it seems we only do this on these dark mornings, maybe an instinctive gesture of comfort?

There have been two murders here in the last half-year. One, still a mystery. I thought about that when I laced my shoes this morning, having finally settled on the trail shoes over the street shoes. I wondered if it mattered if I ran through subdivisions or along the trail. Then I tried to sweep the discussion out of my mind, reminding myself that I’m more like to slip and die in the shower than run into a monster at the lake.

Then I remind myself that is not exactly a productive train of thought either.

I put on my headlamp and a reflector vest, and I gave Leonard a consolation treat as I headed out the door without him. The hound is more interested in dust bunnies than hare, and I’m safer on the run without him skittering between my legs and potentially tripping me every time someone passes us.

Or every time there’s a rustling in the bushes.

There’s a somewhat steep hill about 2 kilometres into my run. Steep enough to force my pulse up when I ascend, and steep enough to challenge me on the way back: trust your body to run down hill. Let go of a false sense of control – trust your instincts, trust your practice, trust the knowledge in your limbs.

Breaking with each step is murder in the knees.