Friday, September 11, 2015

Cheryl’s 22 Mile Dog Run

DOG!   Noble and Majestic! Actually there are lots of titles I could have chosen for today’s post, but I thought I would stick with one of the positives…..and one that avoided profanity.  And besides,  I LOVE dogs!  People may use the label of “dog” as a bad thing.  Master’s Dog, Dog of the Military, Dogs of War, Died like a Dog, Throw him to the Dog’s, face like a Dog!  These are all terms that people use as insults.   WELLLL…..The Dog is a Noble Beast that has a side that some people conveniently forget!    They are Loyal, Social, Team Players,  who can achieve great things as a group ( or Pack) that an individual could not on his own.  They are smart, friendly, and loving.  It probably might help to know that I was born in the year of the Dog….and I think that fits my personality well.  But before I get too distracted….Let’s get back to the run.

It has been cooler the last couple of days.   Great for running!    I’m pretty sure it even rained last night, bringing in even cooler temperatures.   We have been getting up early trying to avoid the heat of the sun, but the temps were cool enough for us to start a bit later.   YEAH, SLEEP!  Suspiciously closed off every road leading to Keota?  

However,  a strange phenomenon has occurred recently where EVERY ROAD leading to Keota has been cut off.   This is peculiar because just a few days ago, we had been going there and the roads were fine,   then, suddenly they decided to work on several roads simultaneously? Alien activity is on the rise! I’m wondering if an Alien Abduction or crash landing happened there recently and the Government is trying to keep the situation contained.   Everyone knows that Alien activity spikes around harvest time in Iowa….When the Corn is at its highest.  (Hello!   Crop Circles, Anyone?) We all know what happens when the Government gets involved.

Other than irritating, this situation causes us problems because we were unable to park our car at the trail head.  So this morning we started in West Chester,  the Half Way point of the trail.    This caused us problems because now we have to map out how we wanted to tackle the trail ( The trail is only 14 miles from start to finish) without backtracking too many times over the same area. 

 Running on Moss is slippery!Cheryl decided we should go down the trail we used  earlier in the summer;   The path leading towards Washington.  This path has become a challenge lately because of the Moss that has grown over the trail.   It makes the path VERY slippery ( even for my bike!) and a challenge for Cheryl as she tries not to fall or trip.  She thought that the path would have dried up recently, AND since we were only going down it a few miles before turning back, Introducing DARK CHERYL!we would avoid the trouble spots.   She was wrong!  Similar to walking on slimy, wet, polished marble,  the trail was slick.   This INSTANTLY put Cheryl in a bad mood….Not a good sign when you still have 20 miles to go and your mental capacity is the main driving force.  We turn around and decide to revised our path plans.   

At least there was no BONK!   She did not quit or walk at any time…instead….She released DARK CHERYL!   In Anime Lingo, we call this “Dark Momoka!”  Dark Momoka.....Sgt Frog Reference.    Look it up!  It's  a GREAT Anime! The flip side of reason and sanity.   It’s a good thing THIS personality does not show up very often, because the neighbors would begin to talk….

It’s even a shock for me sometimes!  I do not see Dark Cheryl very often…so when she makes an appearance,  I have to fall back and assess how best to handle the situation.  I’m lucky in that these instances are rare.  Poor Cheryl has to put up with “Dark Ethan” more often…..But by being exposed to that side of me frequently, she has learned to wave her hand and boss me…even when I turn green!Ethan every other day...

So, between fits of DARK CHERYL and silence,  we encountered a couple things I believe were sent from the heavens to save me in my Dark Cheryl moments.   A couple of walkers and cyclist were also using the path….Something that is fairly rare.   They showed up just when the situation began to look grim.   Dark Cheryl usually retreats whenever a stranger is present.   It was a “Moment of Calm” that I will cherish.

 Isn't he CUTE?  And then enter the DOG!   About mile 19,   an American Bull Dog appeared.   I’m prepared for this!   I have a stash of dog twists for larger dogs that we encounter on the trail/road.   It gives me an excuse to run up and pet them.  Cheryl, on the other hand, is not so friendly to dogs.  The Local Golden Retriever has done wonders in curing Cheryl of her Phobias….but she does not share much love for the canine counterparts.  Add in that this is a BULL DOG!   Even I was a “little concerned” because even though they are a lovable bundle of JOY,  sometimes they do not know their own strength….namely jaw strength.   And What dog does NOT love to play a game of “Chase”?  Who would not want to run with a Bulldog?

Dark Cheryl must have still been in control, because she did not slow, stop or waver when the dog ran up to her.  Instead she simply ran as if the dog was not there,  pausing only for a moment as to not trip over him.  As for me,  I was whistling and calling and pulling out treats to give to my new unacquainted friend!   Who could resist that mug with a waggy tail?

Cheryl Crashes after transforming back.    He didn’t take any treats ( surprising, as these are the chewy types that larger dogs love)  but instead let me pet and scratch him all over.   After a few moments,  he ran back after Cheryl and continued to run with us for the remainder of the distance.  Hiro InvestigatesIt was a strange thing,  an unknown dog following us for three miles and then…simply returning home.   He looked like he was having a great time running with total strangers.

Later, Cheryl confessed she was tempted to cut the run short, until that stupid dog joined in and ran around…making it look so easy and fun. So this is where they get that image. We finally got home and Cheryl crashed on the front lawn.   I told her she looked like a chalk outline for a crime scene.   Even Hiro had to instigate if she was alive or dead. Hiro Thinks he saw Movement! 

So that is it!   Cheryl survived her 22 mile long run…( And I survived Dark Cheryl!)  and now we begin tapering down for the Marathon.    We have a half marathon next week, so hopefully we will have something to chat about then.   Until then, looks like I will be scoring for Pearson tomorrow. ( If I qualify, that is!)  We shall see.  Have a Great Weekend!

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