There really is no such thing as a bad run

I’d planned to do a much-needed, pre-marathon long run today, but everything went pear-shaped.

I live in New Delhi, India currently one of the most polluted cities on the planet – if not THE most polluted.

On a cold, uber-polluted morning, it seemed foolish & totally counter-intuitive to head out early to do the scheduled 30k I’d promised myself I’d do.

So it would have to be later in the day, when the pollution would be less.

Which meant wheedling agreement from the family to advance lunch, so I’d have enough time to run – oh, you know what, I won’t bore you with the tedious internal disputes around my running schedule. That’s all part of my own, personal running drama 🙁

Anyway, off I trot after lunch, all set to do 30k, well perhaps 25k given the short winter afternoon, OK, I’ll be happy with 20k…it was fast developing into that kinda run. Hadn’t digested lunch, so felt borderline queasy and at 5km I made a decision. Stop running for today because it’ll end in tears otherwise.

Grumpily, I headed for the park gate, angry with myself, angry at the filthy pollution that blights this city, angry with…and then I met up with a delightful Korean couple I only ever see in this particular park. The lady hugged me with great glee, and promptly pulled a calendar out of her handbag and gave it to me.

I hoped she had had a good Christmas?

“My children came home to visit, the best Christmas present!” she smiled at me.

I told her my children had also come home for Christmas, too, at which point we hugged each other again.

And off I trotted back to my car, with a smile on my face plus a calendar richer. All because my run had gone the way it did.

Tomorrow I will brave the early morning cold & dark & pollution, since that long run has to be done.

But I bet I won’t get a friendly hug, and certainly not a calendar!

What’s meant to be is meant to be, even in running.

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