There’s a tractor on our land and quite a bit of noise, this was our Sunday morning wake-up call. The harvest crew for the olives have arrived, with tractor, trailer, nets, air compressor, leaf wobblers – not sure the Italian word translates as well, and our ‘dog share’ Argo; he always likes to oversee any proceedings.
The usual faffing and prevarication prevailed, but I did go out. Day 2 – planned 9km. It’s a clear day, but not that warm yet, so long running tights and base layer are a must. Agree to meet Mr JCR at the coffee shop, so he can rescue me from the long walk back up the Bitch of a Pitch.
I take my usual route and it’s a busy day around here. The olive harvest is in full swing – to obtain the best certification for your oil, you have to harvest and press your olives within 24 hours, so the area is a hive of activity. We have about 40 trees and our yield of olives is a mysterious measure called a quintale. Our neighbour has 180 trees and he has only secured one quintale, we however will have three or four. This is a great example of the vagaries of olive farming; our houses are separated by the width of a road, yet he has virtually none worth gathering. Olive farming is not a route to great profit.
I run past the olive mill in Mill Lane – usually silent, but today open and humming with a trailer of olive waste material growing in size as I run past. To Lovers’ Lane, where there are absolutely no lovers nor sign of life, I aim towards the Bendy Scary Road and coming towards me are a posse of older cyclists, all in club kit – a black and amber yellow combo. They are about six or seven in number and they shout buongiorno as they go past. Coming up the rear, is a man I recognise – this is the cyclist built for comfort and not speed – apparently he has joined the club and they have spoken to him about the dress code. Great joy, he was not wearing his transparent white cycling shorts, he was in all-concealing black. Never did I think I would be ecstatic at the sight of black cycling shorts…
I continued on the Bendy, Scary Road and a second cycling club came up the hill – the first person who passed me said – ‘Look it’s a woman running’ – yes he wins the Most Obvious Comment of the Day award – but a few of them said the same thing. I know there aren’t that many runners on a day to day basis, but the ones I do see in running clubs tend to be male, so maybe I am a rarer beast here than I thought.
Third cycling club of the day, much younger and they didn’t say a word, nor did they give me much room as they went past very speedily, but they were about 30 strong, riding three and four abreast. I think overall I prefer the older cyclists, they tend to be a little more courteous and friendly.
At the 7km mark, I turned off into War Of The Worlds Lane, here the pace slackened a bit and I took a gentle jogamble towards the end. There were many pedestrians here, dog walkers, pram walkers, and youngsters on their bikes, all taking advantage of an unexpectedly warmer Sunday than forecast. The great thing about having spectators when you run, is that it keeps your motivation high – you can’t slack or be tempted to stop when you have an audience.
Another lovely run, I’m glad to have got it in as the storm clouds are gathering and next week looks like shower dodging runs – I’d quite forgotten what rain looks and feels like. Oh and I just broke the 1700km mark. This Olive Oyl runner is definitely in need of some spinach, to give me some iron for the colder weather ahead, but maybe I’ll settle for the green gold of our olive oil instead, which is due to be milled tomorrow.
Back To Black (twice) – Amy Winehouse
All She Wants Is (twice), Planet Earth – Duran Duran
It’s Raining Men – The Weather Girls
Temptation – Heaven 17
Night Fever – Bee Gees
Love’sUnkind – Donna Summer
She Sells Sanctuary – The Cult
All Stood Still – Ultravox
Baggy Trousers, Embarrassment – Madness
Be My Number Two (twice), Beat Crazy, (twice), Breaking Us In Two – Joe Jackson
Blasphemous Rumours – Depeche Mode
Enola Gay – OMD
Eternal Flame – The Bangles
Rumour Has It (twice) – Adele
Average Pace 6:50
Kms Run 1701.85
Kms to Run 316.15