Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Running lessons: Everything old is new again

The weather wasn't great on the weekend so, to give myself some incentive to complete my long slow run, I suggested to Husband that I meet him at the Knot Pub in Lunenburg for lunch. It turned out to be a great idea. On a grey, dreary Sunday morning, the road between Conquerall Bank and Lunenburg, traffic was quiet and, as it took me past many familiar landmarks, the route stirred up lots of memories - the community centre in Dayspring where I attended dances in my teens and spent many long evenings rehearsing community theatre productions, the shipyard where a friend worked one summer, the road where a former boyfriend lived. I was struck again by how much more I notice when I'm running (as opposed to driving) down a road.

For instance, though I've driven by them hundreds of times over the years, I don't remember ever noticing the many small cemeteries along the way - some of which are quite old. One I noticed in particular was the Mulock Cemetery. Mulock isn't a family name that's familiar to me so I looked it up when I got home. Apparently, it's Irish in origin, though branches of the family emigrated to Scotland and England and, eventually, Nova Scotia. I found only 17 telephone listings in NS under that name - all in Lunenburg County. Given the age of the cemetery, it struck me as odd there weren't more but I suppose that explains why it wasn't familiar to me. 

Something that always makes me laugh when I travel the road is this sign:

I can't imagine why anyone would name a place "Centre" - let alone, "Back Centre". For the record, there's a "Front Centre" nearby as well.  

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get many photos on Sunday. The light was poor and, in any case, I was trying to conserve the battery in my smart phone. I discovered  as I was preparing to leave the house that I'd forgotten to recharge my garmin again so had to rely on my phone to measure time and distance instead. Fortunately, it lasted just long enough to let me reach Camp Norway on the outskirts of Lunenburg, from where I did a final loop through downtown and ended up at the pub where Husband, dry clothes, a cold beer and a yummy lunch awaited.   

It's too bad my phone died when it did. The sun broke through the clouds just as I reached town and I was looking forward to taking a few photos from across the harbour. Lunenburg is a very picturesque place - a UNESCO world heritage site that draws thousands of visitors a year - so, even on a sleepy Sunday afternoon in late March, it was a pleasure to visit.

One last thing, it was cool enough to snow on Sunday, which seemed amazing. During the same period last year, temperatures reached record highs. On March, 2012, I went for a run along the Dartmouth waterfront wearing nothing but a skimpy running top and shorts because it was so hot. Quite the contrast to this year when I wore full winter running gear on the first day of spring.  I remember the date well because, when I reached the waterfront, I ran into someone I knew and stopped to chat for a bit - amongst other things, about how oddly warm the weather was and my upcoming birthday.

Speaking of which, there are only four days remaining in my 50th birthday year. Overall, I have to say I'm pleased with how I've marked the occasion. I've checked a number of items off my bucket list, dreamed some new dreams, and refocused my life on the things that matter most to me. As I approach my 51st birthday, I can honestly say I'm looking forward to getting older, wiser, stronger, more creative and (I hope) gentler in the years ahead.

In closing, here's a summary of my week's training:

Total # runs: 3 
Total distance: 38 kms
Longest run: 23 kms (more or less)
Hill training: 1 x 6 hills
Tempo runs: 1 x 8 kms

Happy running and writing, friends.


  1. The road to Lunenburg is one I've often thought of running, Janice - with it's nice big shoulders and good sightlines! And relatively flat compared to the roads I run :) Great job on the long run. I'll have to remember the 'bribery' trick!!!

    1. The road is *relatively* flat, Janet, but don't be fooled. It's a long slow climb from Bridgewater to Centre and my legs were certainly feeling it by the time I arrived.

      Yes, do try the bribery trick. Having something to look forward to makes long runs feel that much easier - as does an extra day of rest now and again. (hint, hint.)