Pollen. Pastures new... and Perfection

Out before 5.30 a.m. A wakening world, drowsily shrugging off the remnants of a restless sleep. Heat and darkness, breaking our dreams, the morning coming too soon and yet not soon enough.

Stretches complete and a gentle warm up. I was off down to the fields, a lone figure in the day.

No music, just the sound of the birds. A steady pace.. 160, to 165 suits me perfectly... down the hill, across the road and up the lane to the fields. The air, heavy this morning, thick and sweet and pollen-laden. The undergrowth in Rookery Wood, spilling in a green tangle, escaping from the confines of its plot and over the fence onto the pavement. Breathing steadily , lifting my feet and watching where I trod amongst the tangles, the shade from the trees, welcome, even at this early hour, and echoes of Laura, encouraging me to relax my shoulders, look ahead and run tall. I decided to cross the lane, hugging the shade under the overgrown pines in a hidden garden. Cool and scented, the sun has not broken through here yet and a grey squirrel dashes for cover up the nearest trunk. Up past the Steam railway and a detour. Up through the gate and along the Bridle Path.

This is often far too wet, overgrown and mud-rutted for safety, but today, bone -dry. The long grass snags at my legs as I run, through the ancient narrow bridleway; Rosebay Willow herb, jostling in a tumbled mass with the cow parsley and while nettles, hedges thick, verdant and perfumed. Honeysuckle tangles with the earliest of wild hedge-roses, and the, as yet, sour green bullets of the wonderfully useful sloe are making an appearance on our favourite tree. Autumn and winter seem a lifetime away, as I clear the relative cool of the hedged track and into an open stretch. This has got to be some of my favourite running, Following a dry narrow path way, a little uneven , but with care, perfectly enjoyable. Along and along I run, lightly and quickly, into the shade again, where the path leads into and through a wooded area leading to the next village. The bird song, is quite literally filling the air, drawing me, tantalisingly, into the secret depths, but the day moves on and home beckons, so I turn here and retrace my steps, running back, hopping through a stile onto the ridge, and down onto the lane again. Running for about an hour now.. still feeling fine :)

Quickly down the hill and through the gate into the big field. I know this path so well, I am sure I could run it blindfold ( I have run some of it backwards, as some of you know:)) My track way gets narrower by the day, but the path is dry and hard and I take the opportunity for a burst of speed to the Steam railway line. Out in the wideness of the land, the air feels lighter and clearer. The sun was warm, very warm and I stopped; water break.. Suddenly, high, high overhead, the most exquisite sound. As I searched the blueness above me, I saw a speck, suspended it seemed in the empty sky. A pure sound, with the clarity of perfection, radiating into the surrounding air. A Skylark. I was mesmerised. I stood for what seemed an age, listening to the power of the warbling song, which the bird repeated, and repeated as it hovered over the field. Truly wonderful. As ever, and those of you who know my ramblings, will understand...( I can hear you sighing.. she is off again)... my mind was filled with words, Wordsworth, no, not this time, Shelley...

Teach me half the gladness

that thy brain must know....

Such harmonious madness

From my lips would flow

The world should listen then- as I am listening now.

Then, just as suddenly, the song stopped, and the speck seemed to vanish; I was beginning to feel the heat increasing and eager to make some shade again, so determined to 'finish in style', one last gulp of water, and across the track at a steady pace towards the lane for home. Over the shingle track and onto the lane. a full circle. As I jogged, very, very slowly, down towards the station, a car peeped at me. turning, I saw it was my daughter, on her way to work. Pretty as a picture, cool as a cucumber and with the sunshine glow of a mum-to be. " Do you want a lift, for the rest of the way home Mum?"

I was hot, I was pink, I was sorely, sorely tempted. But no... I am a runner, I came out for a run, and I will finish my run. So, one window kiss, and a hug, and she drove on her way.

I ran all the way, to the bottom of my hill, feeling calm, refreshed, and truly blessed. A run of pure delight; as our friend IbenCopenhagen would say, Soul Balm.

How true.


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52 Replies

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  • Sounds wonderful. Who needs music when you have the birds!

  • No one..๐Ÿ˜

  • So beautifully descried I feel like I was there with you ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  • Welcome..I love taking friends with me:)

  • I simply love your ramblings Oldfloss! It is just like being there. Thank you for taking us all along with you. Glad you got out early.

    When is your grandchild due? Can't wait to hear about babyfloss๐Ÿšผ

    And what's going on with "pine bark extract"???

  • You, my friend are with me, on every run... since we met! I needed to get out there as I knew the day would defeat me! So hot here still... I am sitting in the garden!

    The new babe is due in October... I can scarcely believe that I will be a Grammy Floss... what an adventure that will be. :) I hope I can be everything i need to be :)

    I think the pine extract is from the reference to the scent of the trees??? The tags are really funny sometimes!:)

  • Grammy Floss, I like the sound of that. And I'm sure you will do fine. Just be you. Tell stories, sing, be the nutty granny who runs backwards๐Ÿ˜ƒ

  • (Pine extract is used for arthritic pains)

  • I love running early in the morning, whatever the weather, but unfortunately the scenery where I live is not so picturesque!

  • Me too..early is so good...especially with this heat!

    I am..so,so lucky;)

  • A runner AND a writer. What a glorious post. Beautiful!

  • Thanks..I'm famous...(infamous) for my ramblings!

    For me, the run and the ramble go together!๐Ÿ˜

  • "A wakening world, drowsily shrugging off the remnants of a restless sleep" that's a picture, painted with words. What a talent.

  • I simply cannot help it... it just comes.. and the runs... they have reawakened the words inside me! What a special thing this is :)

    And.. the joy of sharing...my runs and my ramblings.. priceless :)

  • Thank you. A perfect English vision to read at the end of a hot, English summer day. x

  • A perfect day...I am so lucky.... and count my blessings every single day... :)

  • Gorgeous ..... Thank you for taking me with you Floss xxx

  • You. my special friend.. are with me on every one of my runs... :)

  • Aw that is so lovely, thank you xxx

  • Pops.. you were the fore-runner.. you kept me going from the very beginning... no way I am leaving you behind... you come with me on all my loopy runs :)x

  • That is a great honour for me Floss , thank you so much !

    This community rocks ! :-) xxx

  • Thats made me feel very relaxed floss, just lovely! We also saw and heard a skylark on Tennyson down on the way up to mums drinkies the other week . Magical! bet that set you up for the day ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜†x

  • Wow Ali.... maybe it is a special Marathon Skylark that flew up here to me :)

    I still feel calm.. sitting in the garden, and still very warm and relaxed... I have had a good day... Big hug x

  • thats what i like to hear, a relaxed floss! i've been on a run at 6pm with tuesday nighters club, it was WAY too hot. did 7.3km felt like further and a hill to finish with-they know how to spoil us! i've had a day off today, and like you, a good day :) big hugs :) x

  • ps yes must be the same skylark!! :)

  • Lovely run Oldfloss. I want to go out tomorrow but it looks as though it's going to be very hot again so I will see if I can get myself out really early and follow your example.

  • Early is good.. I just knew that if I left it, to my normal morning time I would suffer. The day went well after that.. although I am soooooo hot now :)

    Enjoy your run.... and stay cool :)

  • Lovely!!

  • It was.... so hot now though... :)

  • Yes, I was out at 7 this morning. Well done for not taking the lift. It's 30 degrees upstairs now - and my house is usually colder indoors than out. How will I sleep!!! Never happy.

  • But we are happy when we run...๐Ÿ˜

  • Oh Floss your way with words is a balm to the soul! Love love love this - you are going to be the most awesome Granny telling the most amazing stories to that lucky grandchild!!๐Ÿ˜˜

  • Thank you so much...:)

    I have been searching, already, for a book of short tales and poems I wrote when i was teaching...:) I could never find just the 'right' ones, for the small ones, so I wrote them myself. :)

    My Dad told me, made-up stories very night at bedtime... Freddie Frog! Gosh, that take me back...:)

    It is so exciting... :) This running is, hopefully, keeping me heart healthy and mind-alert, ready for the big event and after :)

  • That is so beautiful and a skylark - wow. You don't need to post photos, your words paint a picture for us all.

  • Such a special moment...last week, when i was in the tin tent, on one of my runs, I heard a Pee-wit ( Lapwing) ! This running does everything... :) I love it!

  • I have that to look forward to when I can actually run without some music to keep me going. We like to take our tin tent to the nice quiet sites where we can enjoy the wildlife. Thetford was disappointing in that respect as we were quite near to a very busy airbase. Very noisy! Jets, helicopters, tanks and gunfire!! Meant we couldn't here the wildlife over the racket most of the time ๐Ÿ˜ฌ But I did glimpse deer on one of my runs - it makes it feel very special.

  • Wow... so envious... truly a magical moment. I can only imagine what that must feel like!

    yatesco seems to see deer regularly on his beautiful runs too!

    I am eager to run in France, when we head out in a couple of weeks time.. it will be very early running I know, so I am glad of the heat now, to try and get a little used to it! I also know that there are Hoopoes and loads of Jays there... cannot wait!

  • A gorgeous post as always floss. And what a gift to hear a skylark! That is really special and it was obviously meant just for you ๐Ÿ™‚

    And you ran for over an hour! That's brilliant and for you it means you see and hear so much more and then you can pass this on to us here!

    Btw, I am impressed that you were only "pink" after a long run yesterday ๐Ÿ˜

    Have a lovely day xxx

  • Tee hee.. I have decided that i will, from now on. be pink and glow gently! I had my hair cut short yesterday too, so i will be lighter and obviously that will impact on my level of pinkness :) :)

    Sometimes, the longer runs are just really good... and not a massive effort...

    The bonus too, is , as you say, being able to really absorb everything. The sky lark, well.. unbelievable really..just serendipity!

    How are you doing? xxx

  • Ahh that word again ๐Ÿ˜Š

    "Glow gently" haha! I wish! I'm sure you'll notice a big difference with shorter hair. I'm debating getting mine cut too as I wear it up mostly nowadays anyway. Couldn't bear it flapping around my face in this heat โ˜น๏ธ

    How am I doing? Don't. Ask. I woke up this morning with a cold sore and I haven't had one for years. I get them really badly, they're huge and they take ages to go away. My hubby said to me this morning " what's going to be wrong tomorrow?" We did laugh because it's now ridiculously funny. I'm falling apart floss BUT I'm still running ๐Ÿค— xxx

  • Huge hug... it always happens... we think ", what next ?" But... you are running..:)

    Yes.. the very, very hot night we had two nights ago, decided me... I have had my hair tucked up under my cap, but I thought.. good trim, ready for France and then let it grow again!


    If it is any consolation, some nasty bitey got me, yesterday, in the garden..I have a lumpy, itchy bit on my arm!!!xxx

  • Very wise. When are you off to France? I bet you can't wait!

    Yes, lots of insects flying around at the minute and the heat makes the bite even itchier. Ugh.

  • Off, two weeks today.... a long time since we have been in August.. and with teenagers.. ( our friends. twin girls)... :) Looking forward to it... a tad scared though... teenagers in a GCSE year! Eeek!

    Mind// at least now I am able to run off! :)

  • Eeek indeed! They'll probably be so engrossed in their phones they won't notice anything else! And as you say, you can just head out for a run to escape ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • "Sole Balm" โค๏ธ It!

    Almost felt I was right beside you. Skylark song echoing in my far mind.

  • This running is amazing.. so many things to so many of us... :) x

  • A wonderful post and as usual very inspirational. As a novice struggling my way through all these podcasts you manage to give me a glimpse of what could lie ahead and how running could one day be a joy :-) Congrats on the Granny news btw - great times ahead :-)

  • Thanks you!

    It is an amazing journey, and we meet so many great folk on the way!

    You just take it slow, and take it steady... after you Graduate..:) you then start another journey , all your own ! :)

  • Lovely post Oldfloss! Think I might try an early run if this hot weather continues. I do love an early morning run but haven't done one for ages. I always think it is the most beautiful time of the day๐Ÿ™‚

  • Well worth it... just you and the world.. simply wonderfulx

  • I loved that run, thank you for sharing - a joy.

  • You are very welcome. I love to run...I love to write, I love to share:)

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