7 July – Grit and Goatees


After a day of enforced rest – gippy hamstring playing up, I was out early today to take advantage of the cooler weather after yesterday’s temporale (thunderstorm). The weather was warm but not oppressively so. I trotted out to Mill Lane,flicked my customary vee sign at the water pumping station and pootled to Lovers’ Lane. Ah, it evidently was very busy last night, with evidence of  ‘lurve’ strewn all over the road and verge. The barking beagles were nowhere to be seen, neither were Anouska and Albino.

I ran down the Hill That Kills into the bendy scary road and saw my first Saturday cyclist, sporting a natty goatee beard. Le Marche is not London, and I have to be reminded of that fact when I bemoan not being able to get hold of certain items. But one area where Le Marche is up and coming and metropolitan in style, is the adoption of the goatee beard. Age, colour of hair, wispiness of hair, none of these factors are taken into account by the ubiquity of the goatee. My first goatee was about 50 years old, dark brown hair almost black in colour with a few stray whites or greys as the ads call them. A border collie type of goatee. He was friendly enough and waved as he cycled past.

At the 3km mark, just before the Royston Vasey village, I got another two goatees – much younger this time, about 20ish I’d say, dark brown both of them, better sculpted than the 50 year old’s, almost perfect rectangles of thatch on the chin. I raised my hand as they cycled past – they didn’t. Not all goatees are friendly goatees.

Through Royston Vasey, a quick water stop with the unspeaking woman, but a new breakthrough, one of the locals asked me if he should move out of the way so I could get my water. It’s the longest, most polite conversation I’ve ever had in that village. He didn’t have a goatee – maybe there’s a causal link between being clean shaven and more talkative?

Now towards the fish shop village and coming towards me is the Hoxton Hipster cyclist I’ve seen many times before, and he has a fully sculpted goatee. As we ‘know’ each other now, despite never being formally introduced, he said ‘Salve’ as he cycled past. A white and steel grey goatee to add to today’s collection.

I then entered the final 2kms of my run, along Bin Lane, no sign of life here, except for two teenage boys – way too young for goatees, and I turned off towards my cafe stop. And absolutely brilliant, having seen an array of goatees, I got the best one today, – I saw my first head goatee – the guy in question removed his cap and the rest of his head had been closely shaved, except for the mysterious goatee patch dead centre.

I feel a new craze has been started, maybe I should let the Hoxton Hipsters and Shoreditch crowd know that they are now officially behind the times and Le Marche is leading the way on head/hair sculpture.

The gippy hamstring is still twingeing and twanging,  but I gritted my teeth and carried on. Goatee hunting is quite good fun, it kept me occupied and not focussing on the aching of my leg. The 3.7km walk home with a 190m elevation gain, perhaps wasn’t my most sensible warm down either

Next up, helmet head hairdo hunting…


Einstein A Go Go – Landscape

(Forever) Live and Die – OMD

Rock The Casbah – The Clash

Mr Brightside – The Killers

Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine – ditto

Somebody Told Me – ditto

When Doves Cry – His Purple Highness

Purple Rain – ditto

Creep – Radiohead

Sign Of The Times – Harry Styles

Hungry Like The Wolf – Duran Duran

Girls On Film – Ditto

Boombastic – Shaggy

Tesla Girls – OMD

Modern Way – Kaiser Chiefs

Lucky You – Lightning Seeds

Reap The Wild Wind – Ultravox

Vienna – ditto


Distance 10.26km

Time 1:10:43

Average Pace 6:53 mins/km

Elevation Gain 38 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Done 1151.38

Kms To Run 866.62




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s