Tuesday nights will find me packing up my classroom and closely following my students out the door in order to do what I do, in the old English D city, that I’ve come to love.
Yes, I run the streets of Detroit, and I run them FaSt.
It’s been pointed out that I don’t need watches, ribbons, medals, or a crowd; but put a boy who’s faster than me, in front of me, and I’ve got all the motivation I need, to do all the needed work, so I can make my way around them.
Being introduced to the Downtown Detroit Runners and Walkers has quite sincerely been one of the best blessings I have been bestowed. Of course it’s just like any group, it took a couple times (well ok, a couple times a couple) of me timidly showing up where the only other person I knew was a person I didn’t really know. But, the group religiously huddles up, calls out their name, and then like a gun start………runs.
I liked the commrodery touch, and then the “can’t catch Matt he’s the fastest boy” rant. There’s not much chit-chat, and luckily I know my way around the city because there is plenty of opportunity to be lost, if you don’t know the route, and you can’t keep up. The runs are as tough as the city streets we run and there’s not anyone looking back, including me
A runner knows; I know how far I am behind the front fast boys, and I know how close the next fast boy is behind me. By not letting myself get caught, I’m in turn getting closer to catching that front group. “All in good time my pretties, all in good time.” (Wicked Witch of the West cackle while wringing my fingers). “These things must be done delicately.”
With that all being said, I’ve never felt more embraced by a group, nor have people accepted me so non-judgingly. I’d go out on a line to say that there’s hardly a person a part of this eclectic club that I couldn’t ring up in the middle of the night for help…..they’d come a runnin’ I’m certain.
So, I go to run fast, chase fast kids who are faster, and subsequently get faster.
I plug the Downtown Runners and Walkers Club to anyone who will give listen. I invite anyone who even has running shoes shoved in their closet under three piles of sweaters to the Tuesday jont! I can’t imagine my life without these people, they’ve become a critical part of my village. Both in running and in life and I want to share them with the world.
Now, it’s not just where I belong, with people who ‘get’ me, but where we belong, with people who ‘get’ us and run alongside us no matter what the course.
So, the reward of consistently running Tuesdays has indeed become getting faster. The weekly ‘medals’ earned are these Detroit folks, who now, a couple years later, I consider some of the best people I know, and whom I can imagine running into old age……….still chasing.
Come chase or be chased every Tuesday from a different Detroit establishment at 5:45 P.M. Get the schedule at https://sites.google.com/site/detroitrunnersandwalkers/who-are-we
Get Chased, Be Chased, Get Fast, Be Fast, Get Faster