Monday, October 29, 2007

I'm no athlete, but in the distance I can launch a pumpkin from my apartment complex... is a park.
Not good enough of a descriptor?
If I stand at the apartment's welcome sign AND take off my glasses, I can STILL see the park.

And I never knew it was there, which just proves there's no better way to greet a new town than in running shoes.

The park is absolutely perfect. Its trails are a little overgrown -- almost to the point that it walks like a corn maze with trees. Reminds me of Anne of Green Gables and my own time when I felt part of fiction.

Last year at this time I had just started at the paper. One of my first "out of the office assignments" was the Henderson Syrup Festival. If if wasn't my first out of office story, it was for sure the first one I enjoyed. The drive was beautiful! Tree-lined roads, Fall leaves, red dirt, horses in green pastures, cattle with plenty of hay... if everyone has an environment meant for their combo of atoms, DNA and chocolate vs. vanilla taste, the road to Henderson was mine.

It almost didn't seem real that I could be driving down such a beautiful road, going to my job.

You can breathe better in beauty.

I breathe better in the park.

P.S.-- Funny story. I went home for lunch today (I got stuck in my apartment last night. The door knob came off in my hand and fell through to the other side. A friend came over to let me out and fix it, but I still needed to tell my apartment complex that telephone calls for help were not being forwarded last night. I'll tell more later. You'll get a chuckle.) Well, as I backed out of my parking spot at work, the radio station was still on NPR from this morning. I guess at lunch they were highlighting orchestra music that made you think of vampires, ghosts and goblins. My music for reversing out of my spot was this big scary multiple-crescendo thing that hit its mark with cymbals. That's not good parking lot music. Every time the crescendo came to the top, I slammed the brakes thinking I was going to hit the car behind me.

Drive/ brake squeal/ drive/squeal


Thursday, October 18, 2007

First run in the new town.


I'm running, I'm running. Don't run into that car. I'm running, I'm running. Hi Corps boys dressed in all khaki. I'm running, I'm running...

I'm home.

There's nothing like a good razoo through town to say howdy.

Speaking of howdy, I'd like to say hi to these special people:

Hey, you girl in the back and blond little one. I'm talking to you.

Hi to all of you and more. (Hi Mike :) )

I miss y'all.

You too, friend of mine...

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

First cool weather run.

Did you hear what I said? COOL WEATHER!!! Today. In the a.m.

It was glorious. The park is bordered by thick stands of trees. And this morning, cool weather fog got caught in the branches and tangled around the knotty roots. The leaves looked thicker for some reason, wrapped in foggy marshmallow. Sticky.

Yet, it wasn't sticky at all. The cool weather was so wonderful.

I wish I could say the run went well, but, my knees (particularly the right one) were really hurting. This whole weak knees business is going to have to stop.

Pray for me, please.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

I haven't had a really good run in about two weeks, and I learned something this morning... in the game of upkeep, two weeks is too long of a break.

The run hurt. I couldn't breathe. The hills were a mess. My arms flailed. I had uneven breathing and couldn't get a good stride.

You see, I had put the big runs on the back burner with excuses: I'm packing. I worked late. I'm tired. I should spend time with people since I'm leaving.

Each are totally valid... but my knees don't take excuses. They say, "you haven't worked me for two weeks and now you want what?"

I want a big run, knees, I tell them. You've had lots of rest, now show me what you've been saving in energy.

And my knees laugh.

It's not funny, knees. Work with me.

If something was funny, it was my attitude before starting. I thought it would be a piece of cake! I forgot how I had shortened all the other runs. I didn't have the training. The build up was on the break down.

Well, as I was running I got to thinking how sometimes my conversations with God are a lot like my knee talk.

I want things to be "strong" when I haven't pushed limits to be stronger.

"Hey, God... I know I haven't been around much. No long no talk. Ummm... so, I've been meaning to ask... What did you do with my joy? Oh, yeah, and while you're reinstating that one, give me some warm fuzzies. I love those. Where'd they go anyway?"

When I don't connect, that Life goes away and the only thing left is words and rules. Boo.

I'm not saying God is a loan shark... like He's coming to make good on my failed bet where I put my eternal life on horse "Mama needs a new pair of shoes." God's not showing up on my doorstep with a crowbar threatening to flatten my face until I can pay back His gift.

I'm realllllly not saying that.

It's not that I have to get stronger in Him... it's that... He offered to change me and I accepted. He said His way is better, and I agreed. He said if I want a life of intrigue, confusion, compassion, excitement, heartache, with the knowledge that someday it would make sense, I should follow Him.

So, the fact that if I don't do those things... of course I'm not going to feel close to Him. Life from the inside looking out will just going to be a shell, because that's what I started with.

So, anyway... that's just what I was thinking about.

If I see you, ask me if I went running. And if I say no, look at me like I just ate your sandwich out of the office fridge or something.

I'm sure I'll make up some excuse. :)

Friday, October 5, 2007

I'm such a pansy.

I've long paid homage to the morning run. It's quiet, it's empty. It's perfect. I love stretching to the Today Show, and breakfast somehow tastes better after washing off sweat in a cool shower.

But, I don't like to run on the high school track when the cross country or track team is out there. If I get up early enough, I can miss comparing their hare to my turtle.


Morning came too fast for my brain, so I just resigned myself to running on the treadmill. Not even Golden Girls could distract me from how bored I was.That's pretty bad.

One for your weird files: I slept with a tube of frozen hamburger last night. While making a crown for one who shall remain nameless ;), I burnt my middle finger on hot glue.

Curse you little yellow pompom :)

I stuck my head in the freezer looking for another ice pack. Frozen peas, no. Salmon... ehhh. Day old bread? too mushy.

The light flickered, and there it was. A rock solid tube of beef. Not perfect, but good enough. It allowed me to sleep and wouldn't ruin over night.


It was still partly frozen this morning and I put it straight into the fridge.

Not rancid.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007

"Because things are the way they are, things will not stay the way they are." Bertolt Brecht.

Big changes swirling around my little hut, and last week, the bottom fell out.

Sept. 28-29
Parents came down for Lake Palestine time. Verdict: Great. We skied, my sweet friend Lauren came out, and Mom and I looked at a used car. I asked for the keys to a $11,000 Rav 4 while dressed in ratty shorts and an over sized T-shirt. I tried to make excuses. "We were at the lake, mister car salesman in a tie."

Don't judge me :)

Well, I must say, I liked the way the little car drove. I liked its leather seats, I liked its mileage, I liked its look.

I liked it so much, I decided I would think about it.

And then I burned my thumb on the car's cigarette lighter.

Monday, Sept. 24:
I go see what the dealership will give me for my '97 Rav 4. They pull out the papers with the dotted line at the bottom, you know, to make it final. But, I was strong. "No signing yet," I told him. Plus, the employee that does the estimates for trade ins is not there.

I work. I write. I have a missed call from the Association of Former Students. The voice asks if I have any other questions about the position, but the clock says it's after 5 p.m. I decide to call them tomorrow.

Tuesday, Sept. 25:
I call.
They offer.
I marvel. Then I question. Then I marvel. Then I question.
"Yes, take it. No, stay."


I go back to the car dealership to get their offer for my Rav. They'll only give $1,000. That's another decision. Will I buy this car?

I tell my soon to be roommate sweet friend, and words of wisdom flow from her mouth. Should wisdom calm you down? It does. I tell my Bible study girls. They pray for me.

It's past midnight when I follow my would-be roommate's advice. She told me to make a list. I map it out. And, wouldn't you know it, the two choices end up equal.

But in my apartment's silence, I'm asked the question... would I regret not taking the position?

Yes. I would regret it.

At the time, that wasn't a good enough answer for me.

Wednesday, Sept. 26:

Called at home about a puppy mill in Upshur County. It was a good distraction, but once it's over, I'm still puzzled about the position. But inside I know what to do. The Lord laid it out so perfect. Way too perfect to explain in my limited language. But perfect doesn't mean it doesn't hurt to say goodbye. I visit with Chapel and her pooch Lucy. Time with her is sweet.

After getting home around 11 p.m., I write my resignation letter. I tell my bosses how wonderful they are and it's true.

On Thursday I sat down in my bosses office and gave them the news. They're kind and wish me well.

I drove to work that day in A NEW CAR!!!

I bought the Rav, now dubbed Beatrice by both me and Lauren. It's a happy silver and I'm happy in it.

Can you tell.

Since then, it's been a whirlwind of activity. Attempting to pack, and then unpack because I need what's already been placed in a cardboard box and taped closed. I've spent more time with friends. I drove to Ft. Worth for Meg-a-moo time.

Nights have been spent away from my messy apartment. They've also been spent away from the track.


I ran a few miles this morning, but it didn't stretch my capabilities. Ohhh, I need to get back on the ball. Tomorrow's a new day. I plan to start mine in running shoes.