An upset stomach after an insufferable official get-together the previous night put paid to any plans I had of running yesterday. The only silver lining was that I could score some brownie points with my better half for taking off from running (which she seriously considers her souten!). Yesterday being our twenty fourth wedding anniversary also played its part!
Today was the first day in a long time that without any coordination through mobile or facebook, the trains ran to schedule. Sundar was at the gates when I joined him at 4:04 AM. It was a largely silent run as the topic of Republic day did not fly. Balu was the only person met and greeted on the way till we reached Lighthouse at 4:44 AM. On the way, the wall paintings of Lord Ganesha, the holy Kaba and Jesus looking out seemed to assure the visiting president that we respect all religions and are a tolerant people. Familiar face of Dr. Mohan was awaiting us at Light house. Cows disappointed us in the first loop and we even decided to offer the banana peels to a buffalo which definitely did not know what it was missing when it refused our offer. I had to carry the burden for the two inner loops and only on the way back were we able to spot our regular black beauty to do the honours.
Babu, the insomniac cook, met us near Kannagi statue, his half way mark, when we were on the way back in the first loop. He seems to have taken the advice of getting sufficient sleep. Doctor, led the way near the finish of the first loop and we did not challenge him today.
As is our convention, the second loop from Lighthouse was to be a free for all. I had taken the road looking to the congested pavement. Sundar had stayed behing to accompany the Doctor. After I had crossed the Gandhi statue, Sundar caught up with me and said that he had to hurry as people near the Gandhi statue had asked him as to why the Son was trailing the father! We finished the second loop at 6:41AM.
Sundar stopped after the Police Commissioner’s office for a drink of water, but, he could not get what he wanted. He had almost given up on a drink and wanted to test his ability to run without water, when I asked him to try the cool water spout outside AVM Kalyana mantapam. We both had a refreshing drink. Today there was no fixture and the hall was having a well deserved break. On the TTK flyover Gerald crossed us on his cycle. I had a pacy run from Gemini flyover to home, finishing strongly at 7:18 AM. This has been my fastest time of 3:14 for a 32K run on this route (the PB being 3:08!).