If you want to get to know me, come for a run.
If it’s our first time out, I’ll take you to a fun little easy route I know, where there’s lots to look at, and lots for me to point out.
I treat the easy run with lots of landmarks like a first date: Make a good impression, keep it light, no heavy stuff, have fun.
If we mesh on the run, we’ll make plans for another.
The second run we take will be a bit more secluded, with less to look at, but still punctuated with things for me to point out – just in case.
We’ll run a bit further, and will be surprised when we hit the end of the route if we’re really hitting it off.
And we’ll make plans for another run, and mean it, not because it was fun, but because there’s so much more to say in the silence between our footfalls.
Everyone wants to crawl inside the silence sometimes.
The third run I’ll take you on, will be 10 miles or more, a gravel trail through the woods, where no one except me ever runs. I’ll warn you a mile before I need about the spot where I once twisted my ankle and had to hobble back to the trail head in the sleet.
And you’ll listen to me unravel even though I say nothing — running through the spots in my trail that are as comfortable as my favorite sweatshirt – worn in just the right places.
And you’ll want to ask me so many things, and yet, you won’t. Because you know they will come out some run, to break the white noise of our breath and footsteps.
And the next run we plan together will become a standing date – not with each other so much as with ourselves – as if we both just need someone there to give us permission to pound the chaos of life out of our bodies through our strides.
And we’ll know that all the best runs are the routes that only mean something to us.
And if, my friend, we really hit it off, the next time we run, we’ll do so in complete silence.
And no one but us will know just how much was really said.
If you really want to get to know me…Come. Run.