Running in Hawaii with akabill.....
"Conflicted and Getting Started"
It was about 0600 dark when I saw the Koolau Mountains
outlined by very rare lightning as I drove out of Waikiki.
I knew my body needed to run but wasn't really in the mood.
As usual the top of my Spyder was down and going up Kapahulu
I dithered about where I would put the top up if it really was
raining hard while I kind of liked the idea of a thunderstorm
keeping me inside for the day. Almost three years of
minimal training cause my L5 is impinging on the S1 nerve
has cut drastically into my endurance and my stamina is
non-existent. Army born and raised I learned wili-nili
that whatever happens you adjust. Good things come your way,
go for it. Entropy happens, modify. The big picture is out
of your control, don't let the small stuff get in your way.
So the mist hit the window and the wipers were on variable
auto and the air was cool and every light was green as I drove
much more mellow than usual across the Pali to the Windward
side wondering what the day would bring.
Do I really want to run? Not really but I've got to run!
Only you can stop the downward slide. The only way to get well
is to GET OUT THERE where you really do like being. Yes it
is hard. Yes it really is embarrassing. You yank the cord and
the motor won't start. You yank and yank and yank and all you
get is sputters cause the spark plug is fouled from inactivity.
Climbing out of the hole is not pleasant. Sometimes its hard
to have the faith that you can ever get out.
You arrive at the Nalo end of the Mauanawili Trail and dare
someone to break into your convertible by leaving the windows
down and the doors unlocked. From town you have been looking
for the source of the lightning, all the way you have been
expecting heavy rain, all the way you know that the only way
to get your body ready for hard work is by doing hard
work and wondering if hard work will work anymore.
Finally (I hope) you can walk (barefoot, in slippers,
or shoes) without feeling like there is a balled up
set of socks under your foot. L5 impinging on S1 is
probably still there but not so you notice. So you are at
the trailhead with no excuse not to run. No lightning,
no thunderstorm, the body's way rested cause you bailed
out of the cross country team training on Thursday.
The Maunawili trail was carved specifically for easy
hiking. Its just that first mile plus up is overgrown
old plantation road It is so overgrown that it looks
like a trail and you can't let it get you down as you
try mightily to push while you can't. You don't dare
try to run while quick hiking and you don't really don't
want to be there. You are quick walking uphill with
full on camelback and two hand holds and all the
necessaries and you are thinking about where you
can get away with turning around and calling it a day.
Its 0700+ and your mind is looking for excuses and your
body is doing just fine. Every time your mind says
I'd rather be doing something else your body is saying
what's the problem? "Hey mind, everything works,
breathing is under control, hearts good, eyes want to see
what they love to see, when we get where they want we'll
stop and let them gather it all in. Meanwhile shut the
blank up." Used to be I got "warmed up" in almost no
time. Go out the door and everything was smooth. Later
it was fifteen minutes then longer. "Warmed up" to me means
being in a groove. I'm running and there is nothing else
going on in my life. Used to be seems a long time ago.
Going up Maunawili I 'know' that I won't really be committed
to being out there for an hour or more and, even knowing
that, I'm thinking about turning around and doing something
else. The body says "what's the problem aka? It's cool,
breezy, misty, the trail is in great shape, you are rested,
and if you are ever going to be any good again you got to
push so push you blanker."
So I set time goals. If I can't
get to Martha's Vineyard faster than the last time I turn
around. If I can't beat the big picture "blank it"
adjust and do something else. But I breeze on Martha's and
think: "O.K. you are carrying enough juice to be able to turn
around at the five mile marker without discomfort." Mean-
while the gentle mist has turned into a full on tropical
rain storm. Normally I stop and take care of business at
Martha's but the big drops are so loud and my body has
temporarily taken over my other mood and my legs just keep
on moving towards the pali. I'm only a half hour into this
run and there is a huge fight for control of aka. I adjust
and my legs keep moving forward while my ears glory in the
sound of rain on the forest and my body is way cool from
the wind on the wet, and my eyes are remembering the changes
to every root and every rock and every rock slide and
fallen tree and I compose an email to Na Ala Hele and slowly
the effort slips away and glorying about being really alive
once again almost takes over.
The big thing about the L5
impinging on the S1 is that I've lost my UP. I used to look
forward to my Tuesday runs with a five mile up after a three
mile warm. Can't do that up any more. Or at least can't
do it like I want to. That translates to doing ups on trails
and there is this UP a semi-mile past Martha's that I used to
not even notice but now makes my heart pound. The S1 seriously
affects my stride and doesn't let me get a full push on an
uphill. Its impossible to get my quads to their limit. My
cardio-vascular can get stronger but my muscles don't do their
part. So I'm "fast hiking" up this hill thinking I'll turn
around at about 4 miles out. Its forty some minutes from the
start and even the intermittent storm isn't enough to keep me
moving. Finally I get to this wonderful knob with a great
sweeping view of the ocean and the cliffs behind and I'm thinking
soon I can turn around and as I look back I see two white hats
moving strongly along a switchback three minutes behind me. I'm
wearing a black hat! It's movie time. 54 minutes into the run and
I'm thinking Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Warm up is over.
I have no idea who is wearing the white hats but I know for
sure that I don't want to be seen running towards them this early
in the run. That's the wonderful thing and terrible thing about
having been who you used to be. The part of me that wants to
make the most of who I am seized the opportunity and asked:
"How long can you stay ahead of them, aka?" Whatever else had
been going on for me got lost immediately. In self-talk I've
bullshitted myself about being "non-competitive" but in the real
world I let the white hats get my black hat juices flowing.
And the run was on. There isn't really a lot to the rest
of the first part of this story. The huge drop rain backed off.
It stayed cool, I was so busy running or fast hiking that I
neglected to drink hand bottles or camelback. Big Mistake. It
became a very beautiful day, and every time I wanted to slow down
I wondered why the "white hats" hadn't caught up to me. On
this run I normally have places along the way where I stop,
drink, eat, take electrolytes, and rest. Not today. I felt
the tip of the spear of the white hats and adopted a new life
and just ran. This trail really does require a lot of small
motor control if you want to survive and this day I had it.
My subconscious tried to tell me that I needed to drink and
take electrolytes and I kept on saying "its wet, its cool,
I'm hardly sweating, lets just stay ahead of the white hats,
blank you." And so feeling the tip of the spear of the white
hats I ran as hard as I could towards the tank where I could
replenish with runoff water and win the race that only I knew
The other thing that was going on during this run was I was
always looking for sign of pig. Our feral pigs are an
environmental and ecological disaster. Their wallows provide
breeding grounds for mosquitoes that carry avian malaria. They
kill off endemic plants and provide fertile ground for invasive
species. And then they also dig up the sides of trails while
looking for protein in the form of worms. From my point of
view they are a scourge. For Hawaiians they are food that
provide a means to bond and a reason to get out there, and
much more that I may never really get close to.
During the last year while fast hiking this trail I came upon a
pig hunter, or should I say I came upon a pig hunters dogs.
Over the years whenever I see hunters I always give my alohas
and tell them when and where I'd seen sign of pig. Sometimes
I am well received and sometimes I'd catch "tude." I knew
I'd like this hunter as soon as I met his dogs. I could tell they
were really well cared for, really into the hunt, and had their
tails (such as they are) way up. When you come upon dogs hunting
you slow way down to a walk, you smile and say softly "aloha." If
they show signs of fear you call softly but keep on moving. If
they get aggressive (rarely) you look for a big stick and pray
there is only one to "worry" you. These dogs were happy,
confident, and led me back to their hunter. He was a very large
full on Hawaiian with camaflouge pants, ancient worn t-shirt,
boots, huge mop of hair under his oversized cap, and a length
of garden hose in his right hand. There was somebody with
him but clearly he was the man. When he heard my "aloha" his eyes
quickly changed. I volunteered that I had seen sign back towards
the tank. He asked if it was fresh. I wasn't sure. Then we
each went our way.
The next week I ran into his dogs again. When
we meet I introduced Mark who was running with me but I caught some
"tude" from the woman who was hunting with him. After aloha's
he throws this big smile and says: "Got a big one fifteen minutes
after seeing you." I say: "mahalo." He says: "See any sign?"
I say: "No, but I smelled them on the connector trail." Something
good was happening. Next run we met and he was with someone else
and smiled as I approached. "Got another one after seeing you."
"On the connector?" "No before then." He smiled and asked me
about what I had seen on this day. His question was phrased so
I knew I had to look closer at the aina (land) if I was going to
be able to answer correctly the next time. And so the process
began. I told him what I saw and he'd ask me about what I hadn't
seen and the next time I'd be looking even closer and he'd then
show me the next thing to look for by asking very gentle but very
direct questions. Over a matter of months he had me noticing
size, number, direction, groups, and how long had it been since
they had been there. He had me paying attention to fruiting of
trees, rainfall, and trail conditions. Our meetings were very
brief, I was on a run and he was on a hunt, so his lessons were
very quick, very gentle, almost like he wasn't being kupuna to
the haole runner.
Around early November I realized that I was
being honored. I'd run the trail in one direction and not see
him or his dogs and coming back there they were. Happened more
than once. Mid December I wanted to show my aloha by giving him
one of my finer Kukini amulets so I carried it with me from Nalo
to the Pali. I didn't see him on the way out and was afraid
he wouldn't be there on the way back and knew he hiked up to the
trail from the valley floor. So I guessed that he would climb
this tiny unmaintained side trail I knew and so I climbed down
it and found a branch across the trail and hung Kukini there.
The first person on the trail would be gifted. I hoped it would
be him. I made it back to the main trail headed home and soon
enough there was a puppy that had to be his dog. The puppy
wasn't sure about me and ran away but soon I ran into his pack
that were in full on hunting mode. All but the puppy ignored me
until I was greeted by the hunter. This time he told me he had
watched me go by. He got two pigs on my last trip, one two hundred
pounds. His smile was my mahalos. I asked him if he'd come up
the ridge pig trail. But he hadn't. I told him about the Kukini
and where I had left it and was not ready for the bottom of the
heart full on beautiful smile that came at me. It was so warm
it made my Christmas right there.
Then he froze. He was hearing
his dogs. My ears are kaput but by watching his body and face
move and his finger pointing I could catch glimpses of his dogs
racing after pig in the tropical rain forest. He was totally into
hearing his dogs run through the forest. They didn't bark but
he knew where they were. I'm watching this and for the first time
in my life I wanted hearing aids. I want to know what he knows and
I have to be able to hear to get there. That moment passed quick
enough and soon I leave him to hunt so I can run. Life is Good
in the Church of the Holy Trail.
"Getting to the Tank"
Its been six weeks since I've been on the Maunawili Trail
and whatever else is going on in my life the travel on
the trail has been enhanced by the unexpected and unasked
learning process the hunter has offered me. So this Sunday,
six weeks later, I'm hoping to run into him and am looking
for something new to tell him about sign. The monster rain
was big drop warm and it smoothed out all signs of traffic.
For all intents and purposes the trail was virgin for my feet.
I was the only being leaving sign with three others knowing
I was ahead or just oblivious to the race that was going on in
my head. I looked for sign at the "Run Bob Run" site and later
at "Jeff's Death Ditch" but no luck. By the time I got to the
"no trespassing sign" three miles from the tank I was beginning
to wonder if the white hats were serious runners or maybe they
just were doing a short out and back like I almost did. Didn't
matter anymore, the way my body processes liquid through my
skin I had to get to the tank to reload or I'd be dead.
No, I still didn't want to be caught so I pushed it a bit all
the while looking for sign. Got to the connector leading down
to Maunawili Falls and knew the "gotta pay full on attention
all the time to where your feet are going" part of the run was
over. At the same time I realized my hands were heavy with
nearly full bottles and the camelback wasn't all that light
either. Danger! Normally by the time I get to the tank my camelback
is sucked dry and I may have one handbottle left to get me to
the Pali if the tank isn't overflowing. Even then I may not
have drank enough to stave off cramps later. Danger! But for
me when I'm out there it isn't all that complex. All those
lessons I'm supposed to have learned get smoothed over in the
moment. Survival instinct does have its value and now every
time my path is a bit smooth I'm sucking on the bite valve
while searching the path for sign and taking chance catching
view of cliffs, ocean, green, whatevers, that let me know I'm
very much alive this very moment really right now. This is
it! I'm in a flow. I know where I am, I know what I'm doing,
I know what I can do, and its all totally irrevelent to the
now. In the Platonic/Socratic dialogue I come down firmly
on the side of Socrates and yet I think even he, if he was of
such a body, could understand and support this moment.
is good! Then, Drink aka Drink no Run aka Run the white hats
are coming. By the time I get to the monster blow down that
we have to climb over I'm beginnng to notice that my body has
been putting out some effort and its going to be a long way
home once I turn around at the tank. Run aka run! Conserve
aka conserve! I'm out of the zone and am looking for the
hunter. By the time I get to the ironwood trees a mile from
the tank I'm thinking I'm not going to have a chance to give
aloha this whole trip. When I get to the unmarked side pig
trail I've still seen nobody and my body slows drinking and
thinking about the process at the tank. Its a solo trip, a
solo run, I have the trail all to myself, enthusiasm that
comes from sharing wanes and BAM there she is coming right
at me with this yellowish vesty thing that spells "running
in the snow in Minnesota" to me. Its blanking 70+ degrees.
But my autopilot spurts out "aloha, how are you?" and I get
a grimmace/smile that I recently have come to interpret as
a fear response and the words "fine, how are you." With
my eyes on the trail I say: "Life is good!" and we go our
respective ways. Drinking and getting to the tank should
be on my mind but I start thinking about that smile. I start
to worry about a world where meeting a fellow runner on
a beautiful trail provokes a response completely out of place
with where we are. I've lost it. I'm trying to concentrate
on my running and the glory of where I am but I slip into
thoughts about this world we live in and I'm back into running
knowing the tank is only a couple of hundred yards ahead and
I hear the sound of footsteps that are not in synch with mine.
DAMN! For ten yards I push my pace and think to go into
Christal's "run aka run" mode and soon realize "that's stupid"
and pull aside and watch two women running really strong
go by followed by a guy. The guy looks back at me and I
know I've seen his face but can't place the name and he says:
"Hi aka" and turns to catch up. The women's style is very
fluid and strong. They remind me of Jackie. The guy
in an attempt to make up the momentary slow caught one of
the toe trippers but didn't go down. I was impressed when
he got both hands down and kept the legs moving so he was
soon upright and they slowly pulled away. Life is good!
So the white hats caught the black hat and the yellow vest
ran the other way and it all happened in nine miles. Time
to reload at the tank and head back to my MR2.
"The Church of the Holy Trail"
When I get to the tank I thank the gods of the Church of the Holy Trail that the overflow pipe is pumping out water. On
the side of the tank is an old sign that says something like
"the quality of this water is undetermined." I've been
drinking this water for many many years and I think: "Damn
straight, this water could be good for you." I take off
my camelback vest thinking to reload it and realize that
it is heavy. I take the top off of one handheld and it is
full. The other handheld is half full. Uh Oh! On a successfull
day nearly everthing I'm carrying would be gone by now. I
lie to myself. "I'm OK." I chug the one handheld and refill
it and drink that. I start to take out the camelback bladder
and then don't. I heft the bladder and say "that's plenty."
I look at the two handhelds and say "that's enough".
my watch and see that it took me 2:17 to do the nine miles.
Used to be I could do the run to the Pali (10.5 miles) that
fast but that's ok this is the fastest in a long time.
The endorphins are still doing their job. In a concession
to reality I take two of Karl King's Kaps and begin to think
about the run back to my car. No chance I'm going to see
the white hats again, they didn't look like they were up
for an out and back. Yellow vest? The only question is
where am I going to find her coming back at me.
He's here for food and for his dogs. He'll be where the pigs
are. Maybe next week. Negative splits? That's the
ticket. If you haven't completely blanked up your body by not
drinkng go for negative splits. So instead of my usual walking
away from the tank and even though I have nothing to tell him
besides I haven't seen sign I hope to see the hunter. I get
into a trot and within a mile I realize I'm hitting the
dehydration endline. I'm very sensitive to the signals and
pretty quick my camelback doesn't feel so heavy. One mile out
and I'm sucking on the bite valve. I'm still looking for sign
and when I climb over the huge blowdown I start thinking about
yellow vest. Out and back on this trail are very very different.
The footing may be the same but what you experience, if you
are alive, is unreal. Negative splits, catch yellow vest, look
for new sign, be real, make the most of the moment, small
muscle motor control, don't catch a toe tripper, run where
you can run, dance where that's better than walking, duck
under the branches of the small branched tree, climb over the
roots of the huge blowdown, STOP and suck and thank the gods
of the Church of the Holy Trail and thank yourself for not
quitting when you get to a OH WOW site and you can see a
cleft in the cliff where a wall of water is flowing thousands
of feet down. Yes, for each of you it could be something
just like that. But I'm alone and starting to accept that
I didn't take as good a care of myself on the way out
as would be best on the way back. By the time I got to the
three mile "no trespassing" sign I knew that I was carrying
less liquid than I would need for an optimal run back. That was
reality but the disappointment was not running into the
hunters dogs on the way back. I was carrying a special Kukini
amulet just in case. I kept on expecting yellow vest to
be coming back at me but my goal was negative splits.
Ultralisters I don't have the command of language
to fully describe what Oahu trails are like. I've run on
California, Oregon, Washington, and Utah "trails" and
to me they are mostly unmaintained roads. I don't want
to give offense but if the Western States 100 is on "trails"
we need another word to describe Maunawili which is way
easier than Honolulu Mauka where we run our hundred miler.
I guess the concept that makes the difference is "mentally
challenging." Its going to be another story some time from
now where I write about the huge difference between "not
road" and "where am I going to land my foot next?" Maunawili
is considered "runnable" yet all but the elite wonder
"where am I going to land my foot next" for most of the miles.
Hawaiian trails are mentally challenging. How well you do
depends on how physically strong you are and how long you
can be nimble and (mostly) on your ability to concentrate
for long periods.
So I headed back somewhat aware that I was redlining
the running/processing fluids barrier but still trying to
stay ahead of the (imaginary) white hats turn around race
and looking to see how soon I would meet yellow vest on
her way back.
Negative splits, live the trail, look for the hunter,
look for yellow vest foot prints, don't trip and fall down,
make the most of where you are and who you are, life is good.
Got to the Ironwood tree and no sign, got to the
Mauanwili connector trail and no sign, got to "no trespassing"
and no sign, and no sign and all the while intimitely aware
of how many miles to go and how much liquid I was carrying.
As I ran in and out of the pali clefts I realized that
I was on the downward side of being fully healthy. I'd
been here before and I wasn't taking care of my full being.
I was carrying Karl's kaps, Tums with Magnesium and an
analgesic. I took two of the first two and saved the rest
As I rounded the corner just before Jeff's Death
Ditch there she was, standing right in the middle of the
trail with a slightly perplexed look and the yellow vest
tied around her waist.
"Aloha, beautiful day."
"Yes it is, I was thinking about turning around."
"You are almost at the 4 mile point."
"Yes, I saw the sign. I was going to go both ways.
How long does it take to run this trail?"
"For me about 2:20 on the way in and about 2:30 on the
"Why longer on the way back?"
"I'm older, out of shape, get tired."
"I'm thinking of going a little bit more and then turning
"Do you have liquid?"
"I've got plenty but I don't like this camelback, it bounces.
Does yours bounce?"
"No, its got lots of adjustable straps."
"What kind is it?"
"I don't know," so I turn around so she can see the label.
"Maybe I'll go a little ways more. I'm wondering about my car."
"Where did you leave it?"
"At the hairpin turn, is that safe?"
"Its not the best place. I avoid problems by leaving my doors
unlocked and the windows down. I don't care, its only so much
steel, plastic and rubber. Have you run this trail before."
"Its pretty nice. The guy who designed it knew what he was doing.
You have one up and one down and most of the rest is in and out
with some really great views."
"Yes, I've been enjoying the views. I stop my watch for the views."
"Me too. I love them, thats really what keeps on bringing me back."
"Well maybe I'll go a way before I turn back."
"I think you'll like it. Except for the last mile its an outstanding
"What's with the last mile?'
"Its an overgrown old plantation road. On the continent they would
call it a trail. Good thing its all downhill."
"Yes, my friend told me about that."
And so I head on out going back to my car not feeling particularly
nimble but glad to get chance to share trail. Passing Jeff's Death
Ditch I replay the tape of him hanging over the chasm held up by
the very vines that caught his throat and tossed him into the
abyss. Shortly we are at the "Run Bob Run" site and I replay that
tape too. Life is good. Soon I'm at the huge blow down that is
both across and down the trail and I go to grab a vine and haul
myself up on the trunk and I get that unmistakeable tremor in
my legs that portends great pain from cramps. "Careful aka."
Getting from here to there is never simple but now just getting
my legs to work requires a measured expenditure of energy. I'm
up on the first trunk. Get my legs over the cross piece with
ripples having me thinking "which way is best to fall if my legs
don't work any more?" Move slowly, carefully, "can I get down
from the trunk to the trail without impact cramps?" Don't know.
Somehow I make it back to the trail and take inventory. I'm standing
there thinking salt?, tums? liquid? what? and she comes around the
corner, jumps up onto the deadfall and says: "I'd thought you would
be way gone by now."
"I'm dealing with incipient cramps."
"What causes cramps?"
We chuckle and I remember that I really hadn't been paying attention.
A half mile back. I really wasn't listening. So now I say,
"Mycar is at the end of this trail, its the white thing. If you want
I can give you a ride back to your car. If you get there before me
and don't want to do the whole round trip I'll be along."
"I may not go all the way so don't wait too long."
We were blessed with a great mid-morning. It was cool (low 70's)
breezy, with overcast on a trail as runnable as it is ever going
But then there was the hydration issue with its incumbent moderation
of effort issue. How do I work just hard enough so I can drink just
enough so I don't run out and can make it to the car with the physical
ability of pushing in a clutch two times? Get it from reverse to
first and I can fake the rest. Lightening my load was having someone
behind me (for a little while anyway) catching the joy and wonder of
Maunawili for the first time. We hit the Oh Wow spots and I'd stop
so she could drink it all in while I sipped just enough to keep me
ahead of the curve.
There wasn't a whole lot of talking. I was much too intent on
survival mode. Fortuneately her voice was in a decible range that
my ears can hear so when something was said I needed only one "huh"
to get it right.
There was this long down about a mile out from Martha's Vineyard that
I warned her about. There are some very slippery rocks on a very
narrow trail where friends of mine had gone over the side more than
once. But by this point I was so concerned about impact cramps that
anyone behind me would be slowed to the point of no worry.
At the bottom of the hill, three miles from home, I thought I'd had
it made until I found that I'd sucked my bladder dry, one bottle
was nearly empty and the other on 3/4 full. Bad word. On the run,
as it were, I chewed a couple of tums, swallowed a couple of Karl's
Kaps, and paid careful attention to moderation of effort.
When we got to Martha's Vineyard there was this momentary sigh of
relief thinking it was all good from here but on the climb out
my left leg told me a different story. I don't know about other
people but when I'm riding the razor's edge and pushing down just
a bit too hard I get these electrically charged ripples that run
from hip to heel. If I had been alone I probably would have just
walked it on home. But I wasn't alone. From Martha's to the end is
really good trail. Runnable. Pick up your feet and you are going
to be ok. The problem was picking up my left leg. My right worked
just fine. My left couldn't handle the impact of going straight
ahead. Reality is closing in on me and I get a vision and a
question: "which would I rather be, Chester from Gunsmoke
or the dieing horse from Picasso's Guernica?" Having no shame
at this point (well at least I wasn't walking) I chose "Chester."
You are going to have to use your imagination for the rest of it.
When we got to the old overgrown plantation road my bottle had
been dry for a couple of miles but I could still fake it while
cutting weeds with my left leg. It wasn't as hot as I expected
and I actually got my mind wrapped around the idea that this
narrow swath through weeds was really a "trail" and I could come
back next week older and wiser(?) and really have fun.
When I hit the end of the trail I checked my watch and couldn't
believe (YIPEE) negative splits. Not by much but still.
I couldn't rip my vest off fast enough to get at my keys so I
could get inside and find the no longer frozen bottles so I could
suck liquid as quickly as I could get it out of the bottles.
While desperately trying to get my body back towards some kind
of balance I look up and catch this wonder whether she has been
following a madman. At this very moment, yes. I offer her some
liquid and she declines. I find the bottle of Hershey's chocolate
blah blah I'd stashed and shake it mightedly. I rip off the metal
cover and suck it down like a Princeton pledge and say: "for recovery
this is better than a 5% saline solution IV." She laughs and I
feel good about that.
I'm opening doors, getting the top down on my car, grabbing towels
stashed behind seats, ripping off singlet and hat while rubbing
mud off my body with a hotel towel and transforming back to
"not trail" by wrapping muddy towel around my waist just before
attacking my shoe laces and praying every moment that I've got
enough liquid back into my veins so that I can depress my clutch
without huge negative feedback. Meanwhile she stands there, I guess,
drinking it all in and finally asks if she can get a ride back to
"Yes." And thinking back on that moment I'm guessing that there
are a whole lot of people in our world who are used to people
who don't really mean what they say and who make offers in bad
Finally we are in our bucket seats with towels wrapped around
our waists and mud firmly ground into my floor and I realize
we've moved to a civilized situation without a civilized
foundation and so I extend my hand and say "aloha, I'm aka."
I hear: "I'm Ann." but my ears don't work and it really doesn't
matter so after two attempts I can get the car from reverse to
first without my left leg going into spasms and we head on out.
The first topic of conversation is how she can find herself
back to where I parked so she can run from there, the second
is about Jackson Chameleons's, and then we get into running
ultra's. She's done some, I've done some. She wants to do
some. I don't dare say someday I want to be able to do
another. Nada, nada, nada. It was a nice ride back to her
car and life is good.
Life is good!
and getting better
all the time.