since january, i've run, oh... a couple thousand miles. (that sounds unbelievable, really.) i'm still liking it, so i guess that means i'm looking forward to the next couple thousand.
i've run all of them outside, and almost without exception, in my own neighborhood. that means i run on public roads. a lot. we don't have sidewalks, so i run on the shoulder, facing oncoming traffic, head up and alert.
and as i run (bounce, shuffle) along, i throw up my hand and wave at everyone i pass.
sometimes my wave just means, "Hi!"
sometimes it means, "I see you coming, don't worry."
sometimes it means, "I don't have a lot of room here, so please move over."
and sometimes it just means, "What? My face is supposed to be this red!! Don't worry about me! I promise I'm not going to pass out in front of you!!"
now, i've run these roads for eight and a half months now. one day i might pass three cars the entire time, and other days i might pass thirty. every once in while, i'll encounter someone watering their lawn, or walking their dog. and every so often, i'll come upon another runner. i wave at them all (mostly, you know, so i don't scare them with my beet faced huffing puffing shuffle). and i gotta tell ya: nobody's waving back!
it's okay, really. i don't take it personally. i take that back. i did take it personally when that one guy not only didn't wave, but also seemed to grip the steering wheel a little tighter in an effort to avoid giving me any more space on the road.
but it would be nice to get a little recognition from time to time. hey! we're all out here together. let's look out for each other! i'm not asking you to talk to me or anything. (in fact, please don't talk to me. i need to save every precious breath!)
but maybe just a little wave; lift your fingers off the steering wheel a little bit. a nod of the head? something? heck, if i can muster the energy to throw up my hand after five or six miles, the least you can do is reciprocate. at least i'll know you see me and won't be running me off the road.
do you wave back? would you wave at me? i promise i won't pass out in front of you!