seattle, staying home

Alone, finally.

I looked out the window and it was grey and rainy outside. This was three days ago. Well into my third straight week of being fully remote working at home.

I was exhausted. I still had more work to do in the evening.

Should I still go on my run before it gets dark?

Yes, yes, you should. 

I changed out of my work (-from-home) clothes, a fleece hoodie and leggings, into my running clothes. Since I knew I’d be getting wet, I wore shorts so I wouldn’t have a lot of excessive fabric sticking to me.

I’m not one to typically wear hats while running but I put one on as I headed out the door. I’d need it to block the rain from getting directly into my eyes.

I ran down the hill and turned right like I normally do. There was not a single person in sight.

Unlike the day before, or even the weeks before, it appeared that I had the neighborhood all to myself.

My hands were freezing as I realized it was much colder than I expected it to be. Were shorts a bad idea?

I kept running, clipping away at a faster pace than the last few days since there were no obstacles, no walkers to avoid. I hadn’t even come across one moving vehicle to yield towards! (Why I always find myself yielding to drivers all the time? I do not know. That’s a rant for another time, perhaps).

About 10 minutes into my run, I saw four people with umbrellas walking in my direction. As we got closer to each other, I realized that it was two mother-daughter duos. The moms were standing behind their daughters. The pairs were walking roughly six feet apart with the mothers chatting to one another, and the daughters chatting among themselves, on either side of the road.

I was both delighted and annoyed to see them. Delighted because it was such a precious moment. Two adults with their teenagers, attempting to spend time with their neighbors while also adhering to social distancing rules. But, I was also annoyed because now I would have to navigate bypassing them without getting too close.

Luckily I hit an intersection before we all would have been forced to cross paths. I would have liked to keep running straight but I turned left to avoid them.

I was on my own again.

The rain started pouring more heavily. Then it started to hail.

Little white ice pellets bounced off the brim of my yellow running cap. It was loud as it hit the ground, the tops of rooftops and even trees.

I couldn’t help but laugh at myself as I continued running. I was sopping wet. My legs were bright red from the cold. My hands were still freezing.

But, I was running with no one in sight again.

I am so cold, but I am so happy. 

I am finally alone. 

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