Why Wednesdays? – Why I Run, Reason #7: People Watching (i.e. Cheap Entertainment)

A Note About This Feature:  Why Wednesdays is a Move Eat Create weekly feature determined to turn the mid-week doldrums upside down and celebrate things I love to do and blog about.  Currently, the focus is on running

I am a solitary runner.  I love to run alone for all of the time it gives me for introspection and private rejuvenation. With that said, I love to run alone, amongst the world as it moves around me.  I enjoy being able to observe others when I run.  I’m naturally observant and curious about life, so running feeds my instinctual urges.  Since I generally run through neighborhoods, there is plenty to see.

Some sights bring me joy:

  • Friends laughing together over drinks on the patio of a nearby restaurant
  • Dogs playing rambunctiously with their people in yards
  • Families feeding ducks or picnicking in the park

Some sights make me reflective:

  • A lone, peaceful looking yoga practitioner on the lawn of Reed College
  • An elderly couple strolling together hand in hand
  • People holding yard sales (I’m always curious as to why the sale is happening.  Are they moving?  Where will they go?  Did someone die?  Is it that kind of sale?)

Some sights bring twinges of sadness or concern:

  • A single, random shoe on the sidewalk (Who did it belong to and how did it get there?)
  • The woman who sleeps each night on a neighborhood bus stop bench, shoes and bags tucked under the seat, wrapped up tightly in blankets
  • A tired, stressed looking man waiting for the #17 bus to take him off to places unknown

And some just make me chuckle:

  • A ‘pirate’ hanging out in front of a local game store
  • A couple playing chess at a coffee shop, intense with friendly competition
  • Another runner who happens to be moving along with 3 large dogs, all seeming to want to go in their own distinct directions

Oh, I do love seeing other runners.  Sometimes seeing other runners makes me feel so happy and full of camaraderie that I just want to grin goofily at them as we cross paths.  Other times, I feel ultra-competitive and start to compare my speed with theirs.  Then, there are the moments when I just (discretely) study them with pure respect and awe – learning from their form and their breathing techniques while I have the opportunity.

My best running is done on my own, but I rarely feel lonely or bored while I’m doing it.  The sights (not to mention the smells and sounds) of all that my community has to bring is some of the best (and free) entertainment I could ever ask for.


Previous Entries in This Series:

Why I Run, Reason #6:  Instant Gratification and Immediate Success

Why I Run, Reason #5:  Breaking Out of Boxes and Shutting Down “You Can’t . . .”

Why I Run, Reason #4:  My Health, Silly!

Why I Run, Reason #3:  Because I’m Able To

Why I Run, Reason #2:  Birds and Tortillas

Why I Run, Reason #1:  Stress Relief

4 comments on “Why Wednesdays? – Why I Run, Reason #7: People Watching (i.e. Cheap Entertainment)

  1. Inga says:

    Exactly! I like to keep an eye on the neighborhood, see what projects are going on, keep an eye out for all the lost dogs posted on signs. I run because I am naturally nosey!

  2. Joanne says:

    I tend to run with other people but we still observe and comment on other people/runners. It’s part of the fun!

  3. […] Why I Run, Reason #7:  People Watching (i.e. Cheap  Entertainment!) […]

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