One sunday run
January 19, 2012 by The Voyager
3am – got up and couldn’t sleep any more. The flight from Australia 2 days ago that took more than 32hrs and time change made me tired, but unable to sleep properly. My brother Les was up and reading something. We talked for a while and at 4am he went back to sleep.
5am – the weather didn’t look so good. The weather report on the radio said the flood warning was in place(!). Very heavy rain was already flooding Austria and Czech Republic and was moving our way. So instead of doing the usual trail run I decided to run into the city to the cathedral. At least this way there was no mud under my recently cleaned shoes.
The city was empty at 5:30am. Scary empty. Only a few drunk punks were coming home from a party. It was kind of hard to run on uneven cobble stones around the old town square and it was taking more energy. As I was crossing one street a DHL truck stopped, let me pass in front of him, the driver rolled the window down and said in broken English “I have a great respect for you , man” . He was probably thinking I didn’t speak any Polish after seeing my American Eagle jersey. I said “dziekuje” (thanks), smiled and went on. This of course made me feel good. I guess I could have been a drunk going home and my presence there would have triggered a different reaction.
Coming back, I ran past home. 1.5 hrs of running on Sunday just didn’t seem enough, even though it started raining and the wind picked up (I have a marathon coming in less than two months, like it or not, the runs need to be longer than that). So I ran past home, passed the railway embankment, radio station and went along the Russian cemetery with T-34 tanks at the entrance. Those tanks have been greeting anyone entering the city from the South for over 60 years and they have become a part of me, just like the parks, bridges, the cathedral and the old villas in that part of the city.
Back in the old days we were fed a lot of war movies and TV series. One of them was about a crew of a T-34 tank that fought along the Russian Army all the way from Russia to Berlin. Those 4 guys and their dog, lovely German shepherd “Rudy” were our childhood heroes and we often played “the tank” in our backyard.
It was no wonder that when I was a kid I wanted to climb inside one of those tanks at the cemetery and feel the real thing if only once. Now, many, many years later I was standing in front of those tanks again and thought about the old days. The pedestals were high, but the hatches in one of them were open and I sure wanted to climb into it again.
I may still do it sometime.
P.S. I did it!