Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sensory Trail Run In The Mist

I went to bed late on Friday thinking that it would be raining too hard on Saturday morning to get a nice trail run in.  Never make that assumption!  I woke up at 0400 hours feeling quite refreshed.  There was only a slight drip-drip noise outside-not the constant pitter patter of rain.

I was excited since I had not been on the Mission Peak trail for 3 weeks.  I arrived a little past 0500 hours at Mission Coffee to meet with my running buddy Dan.  The stars were twinkling over head.  Jupiter was high in the sky facing off with a full moon.  Silver steam rose from the ground from the nocturnal showers.

With flashlights on, we progressed up the trail until we were slowed by slippery wet clay.  We moved off the main trail to the grass for more traction.  I always enjoy obstacles like mud, snow, rocks, and whatever God throws at me.  Dan likes things cleaner.  He is an engineer and lives a very orderly life despite the fact that he is the father of 8 children.

The sounds, smells, and sights on this run were extraordinary.  The moon and the stars gave us a natural light show which was quickly dissipated by an early sun rise which gave way to red pastel wisps of fog and silver clouds blanketing the valleys.

When we crossed the gate at the end of  Mill Creek Road, we were amazed at the rapid wing flapping of the native grouse zipping in and out of the trees.  Wild turkeys move about the trees and lower grounds but were not as successful as the grouse at rapid movement.  Could be the difference between a fifteen pound bird versus a 15 ounce bird?

We were greeted with smells of eucalyptus, bay laurel, anise, and vanilla.  Herds of wild turkeys were dilly dallying around on the grassy hill sides.  A  few male turkeys faced each other in fighting postures.  Some made daring assaults only to by blocked by other fighting birds.  While all this was going on, 2 deer passed by quietly with no concern for anything except to forage on the grass.

While making our final descent of the trail run down Mill Creek road, Dan explained with some excitement to listen to the present quietness and compare it to the noises that were going to hear once we had a view of the Bay Area.  Once we rounded a corner that shrouded the city noises, we  were greeted with a wall of buzzing freeway noise, distant train whistles, diesel trucks down shifting, and chain saws ripping through wood.  It was barely 0700 hours and we wondered what happened to all of our peace and quiet. 

What a reality check!  We live in a world with so many noises, it's a wonder that we hear what our children or loved ones say to  us.  Then maybe we don't.

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