The beauty of being outside

Today, I went for a run with my running group.  This is our annual New Year’s Day run that the group has been doing for 17 years (I have only participated in the last 3).

We meet at our normal meeting place at the football field of Pacific Grove High School with headlamps at 0600 and run through the forest in Pebble Beach up to the hospital, where we meet another batch of runners, drop off our headlamps and run to Jack’s Peak to watch the sunrise, if it’s not overcast.  From there we head back down the hill and run through Hatton Canyon to the Barnyard and the start of the Rio Resolution Run, the annual New Year’s 10k.  More runners join us there.  Some people stop there and have coffee at the Crossroads, the rest of us run with the 10k runners for about a mile and a half into Carmel-by-the-Sea into Pebble Beach and back home.  It’s a really lovely way to start the new year, despite my not being a huge fan of this societally made up holiday.  I understand the use of the Gregorian calendar but the way it is set up but it’s so unnatural, what really makes sense is a lunar calendar…I’ll leave that rant for another day but New Year’s Day is just another day.

This morning it was pitch black and there were 5 of us running along in the light of our headlamps.  Despite our friendly chatter, it was so quiet and we heard the deep hoo-ing of an owl.  We all stopped our conversations and listened, we silently marveled at the sound of this unseen nocturnal creature.  It was such a beautiful sound.  It is beautiful because it’s not so accessible to me, I am not often awake and out with the owls.  I thought to myself, this is why I do what other people insist are crazy things.  This is precisely why I wake up at 5 AM to get into my running clothes and make coffee and run in the cold, dark morning.

Happy New Year, beautiful people!!

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