Out before dawn this morning, Venus (or was it Jupiter?) scintillating manically on the horizon, the Plough wheeling overhead.
Not the short fast sprint I had planned but more a steady lope with passages of shuffle. If I'd realised how lethal it was out there, I would have used the treadmill. It was deceiving as the pavement was merely wet when I set out. Then I hit black ice and felt my foot (clad in my least grippy shoes!) slip sideways. None of this was helped by it being bin day: some people put out the food caddies instead of the food bin, and they are small and black so can catch you unawares in the dark.
Even on the downy bits, where I usually bomb along to make up for the slower climb on the uppy bits, I was mincing like the Corps de Ballet in Swan Lake. At the bottom of the hill, it was so bad - frost sparkling right across the road and lurking in lichen-like discs the size of a football all over the pavement - that I had to turn round and run back up the hill I'd just run down. The side streets were worse, forcing me to churn through frosted grass, avoiding road and pavement alike..
But back home in a crisp, beautiful dawn that made the run worthwhile.