It is 8, 27. 8am and the thermometer is now registering 27 degrees. The temperatures are reducing gradually and I need all the help I can get at this point – calling Mr Smooth.
Mr Smooth, just so you know, you have competition; my other sporting crush was on TV on Saturday, a certain Mr Jurgen Klopp. There’s something about the floppy fringe, the smile and the glasses, makes my heart flip. It’s a pity Mr Klopp’s record with Liverpool FC, isn’t as good as Mr Smooth’s on the track. So Mr Smooth, it isn’t all plain sailing you know, I’m expecting you to up the attention you’re giving me.
Anyway sporting crush to one side, today is the day I have to crush the Hill that Kills, she has bitten me twice and caused problems, but not today, I am icily focussed. To get me in the mood, I played Get Dancin’ by Disco Tex and His Sex-O-Lettes, this was pre warm up walk. Locking the door to the final chords and Mr Tex’s voiceover saying ‘ my chiffon is wet darling, my wig is wet’ – now what could be a more inspiring and icily focussed set of lyrics than those?
Mr Smooth interjected and I was glad he had turned up, after all last night he was in London and I did wonder if he’d make the flight to Italy on time. Usual route, down the Slope of Hope, past the balcony barking dogs – two barks and an F word from me (the dogs did the barking, in case you wondered) usual stuff. Then into the Hill that Kills, I think the last two times out, I may have been a bit keen and gone too fast, so I deployed tiptoe running mode to reduce my pace. I got up the hill and was a reasonable way down Lovers’ Lane when Mr Smooth said I’d done 5 minutes. That felt fine and continued on.
Nobody about today at all, it is Ferragosto week, which is a national holiday week, so even though I live in sleepyville, it is sleepier than usual, as loads of Italians traditionally go to the sea or the mountains, as the last hurrah before September. Out of Lovers’ Lane back up to the Hill that Kills, and the half-time bell goes, Mr Smooth reminds me that this is a perfect time to consider changing my pace.
I did consider it and then decided not to. Running down the Hill that Kills, past the farm fresh eggs sign and their dogs – yup barking again, another 2 F words and I continue. At the bottom of the Hill that Kills, I do a 90 degree turn and start on the way back up. Half way up is where the Hill had turned into a shark and bitten me on the glutes. But this time I tiptoed away from her, and did it, it wasn’t pretty, it certainly wasn’t elegant, but she didn’t get me.
Today I am wearing my yellow fluoro combination, with sports socks that have wings on them, well it’s a weird black flap, I can imagine they are wings. I look back over my shoulder to the Hill that Kills and remember Mr Smooth’s words last night about a certain Mr Bolt. “He is a beacon in a yellow vest and golden shoes” and then a little later “We will forever remember those moments when the clock and the world stopped”.
I am a glowing red beacon in a yellow top, no golden shoes and no-one except me will ever remember when my running clock stopped today. But I do share one thing with Mr Bolt, I realise I do actually love running. Even though running doesn’t always love me in return. There’s no greater satisfaction than achieving the time, the distance, the red face.
Finally Mr Smooth told me my running time was up, I punched the air – it was a bit Tim Henman like, in truth and I wanted to shout ‘my chiffon is wet darling, my wig is wet’, but I am not wearing chiffon or a wig, so I had to content myself with ‘yes, oh yes’. Thinking about it now I am not sure that was any better scripting…
So it’s 8 and 1/2 weeks in and like the Fellini film, I am retreating further into the fantasy JCR running world. Will I get back to any semblance of normality if I graduate?
Face Paint Chart Colour – Monarch Red, – it’s still too warm for Salsa Red. But Revenge on the Hill that Kills, – cold cold icy blue.