Saturday, May 29, 2010

Spectator Friendly

Where I train folks more or less accept me as the local nut that bikes or runs on their roads. After a quarter of a century of this, I sort of believe people don't see me any more. I am sort of a landmark or historical marker or something. No one knows or really cares what I am doing out there.

The other morning I really didn't want to run. The night before I let myself be lead into eating Mexican food. That morning I had the food preservative blues, feeling like I had been drugged or something.

Somehow, the will overcame. I made the drive and parked where I usually run out on a seldom traveled country road. It was hard to get myself together and I could think of all kinds of good, plausible excuses just to go on back to the house. No one would know or care.

But there was a Mockingbird on the utility pole very near the truck and he was singing his heart out. My goodness that bird was pumped up! He would sing a while then jump up, fly in a small circle, land in the same place and keep on singing but with another tune. It was like he was cheering for me, offering encouragement or something. That morning, I really needed applause from an upbeat spirit. I smiled and took off leaving my excuses and my friendly spectator behind. I am losing it, I thought. I am starting to listen to and receive inspiration from birds. Oh well.

An hour later, drenched in sweat and feeling much better than when I started, I arrived at the truck. Would you believe that bird was still there and still at it? This time, I could suppose he was cheering me in, doing those crazy loops between songs. I could not help but smile and say thanks. Now, I am a surely nuts; talking to birds!

And I thought: sometimes when the cares of life have us in a hangover like state of mind and body, we just need an upbeat spirit to help us summon the best that is still within us; summon us to believe. And sometimes it is our calling; our turn to be like that bird and bring that upbeat spirit to others as well.