The last of these was definitely something to look forward to, but it was not without stress inducing factors of its own. Husbando had to be there on Thursday, while I was still at school until Friday lunch time. He pootled off on an aeroplane on Thursday, I followed by train, having begged a lift from school to the nearest train station, on Friday. My train was delayed, so I didn't get in until nearly 9pm - just enough time for a quick walk up to see the Castle before bed time!
Scottish parkruns start at 9.30am, not 9am - which meant a little bit of a lie in, although Husbando doesn't do lie ins - he was awake from about 5.30am! We helped our taxi driver find the Figgate Park, using the map from the very excellent Tourist Tool, and got there, a little later than I'd have liked so missed the first timers' briefing. We did hear the main run brief, so knew to stay on the paths, stay on the left and to be nice to each other. I really like that last instruction - we could all do well to follow that one, at parkrun and in every other part of our lives!
Figgate Park looked beautiful in the spring sunshine - it must be gorgeous in the summer. The course is three laps which are narrow enough for much of the time to see runners running in the opposite direction. There are plenty of friendly marshals to make sure you don't get lost and to offer encouragement! It is pretty much flat as a pancake and all on tarmac, with a few bridges to run under and over and lots of twists and turns. Because of the requirement to stay on the path, it took a bit of time to get over the start line, we'd put ourselves with the 26 min runners even though I didn't think for a minute I'd be able to keep up that pace.
The field soon started to spread out, I wasn't looking at my watch, just enjoying the run, I wasn't being overtaken too much and seemed to keeping up with all those around me, even passing some people. Husbando ran with me for just over one and a half laps which was lovely, then we went our separate - not ways - paces! He, in a mad dash for the finish line, managed to miss the finish funnel totally and run straight past it (there were a lot of people standing around there and it was quite confusing - but really!) With the support of the RD we got around this, because I pointed out that the person in front of me was a funnel ducker, so Husbando took that token and just had a slower time recorded. Meanwhile I was still plodding around. My 250 shirt got a bit of attention, and a lovely chap started talking to me. Sadly, since being ill, I can't manage talking and running at the same time (actually - some of you are probably quite happy about that!) and my pace dropped off considerably. I had to apologise and explain that I wasn't being rude, but I just couldn't keep running and hold a conversation.
|212 steps to go!|
|We tried to come down here..|
|The sensible path down.|
|Crazy, uneven 'steps!'|