Friday, 27 March 2015

Gandhiji Tussi Great Ho

            I was amazed at my mature response to India’s loss in the World Cup semi-final. At least running has given me the equanimity to face such situations with calm. Earlier, I would have chewed up all my nails a few days State mourning would have been declared. It was business as usual. I remember the comment somebody had posted that 11 Indians were working and the rest were watching them. When I met my friend, the traffic policeman manning the busy pedestrian crossing near the station today, (he is a die-hard cricket fan and I had asked if he would take off for the all important match and he had said with sadness that he would have to follow it on his Mobile!) I told him it was good that he did not get leave and I did not take leave. At least 13 Indians were working yesterday!  
            Why this sudden reaffirmation of admiration for Bapu? I was recently going through a video by Dr. Michael Greger on why survival rates or longevity of Vegans is not much different from Meat eaters and Vegetarians even though they score much lower on risks on all major diseases. It was proved in an erudite one hour presentation which sounded like a whodunit that the villains of the piece are B12 and Omega 3 Acids. The scary part was that Vegans have a substantially higher risk of neurological and brain diseases. Now Gandhiji before Google and Youtube had cracked the mystery using his experiments with diet and traditional knowledge. His recipe for Omega3 acids was the humble Flax seeds (or Linseed) and as for B12, his wife Ba helped him in seeking the humble Goats help. These issues have been plaguing me since I decided to go Vegan about two years back.
            I have been conscious of failing memory for names and faces (which could just be natural decline with age!), but, I decided to go for B12 supplement and taking Flax seeds (ground). I hope I build enough of B12 to be self sustaining after I finish the one month course of the supplement. Why I narrate this story is how that great man had his fingers in so many pies (there doesn’t appear to be a field to which he has not contributed!) even while leading the fight against the mighty British.
            These were the thoughts which were uppermost in my mind in the morning as I sat at my spinning wheel with Biscuit dozing next to me. As usual, the small inner voice tried bargaining for a break from run so as to conserve for the weekend long runs. For me now, I believe like cricketers, I want to make the form count. I want to put in as many miles as I can. To cut the long story short, I changed into my running dress before Biscuit’s walk and that settles it for me.
            I was at the gates at 4:19 AM. The strip tease point, the intersection of Uttamar Gandhi Salai was steeped in darkness, thanks to COC giving the old man privacy to contemplate the state of his country. Today I had a long discussion with a scooterist with a pillion at the signal before Saravana Bhawan who tried to convince me to run on the left side of the road instead of near the divider. I thought this was a settled issue with the Hubli Pass’r and Traffic police, Chennai would have notified it, but, he said many drunk come during that time. Much to the amusement of another old man who was patiently overhearing us, I explained that with sober people like him, I had no danger and as for drunk, they surely would not know right from wrong!
            The dog with his owner (the one who is my weather vane!) came with his tongue out by a mile scaring me to prepare for fireworks of the kind Men in Blue got from the Aussie pacers.  Profuse sweating I was experiencing even at my relaxed pace corroborated the dog’s prognosis! Clock near Gandhi statue struck the hour of 5 even as I was near the MRTS flyover.
            I have this old distinguished person who seems to be recovering from some stroke and walks with a walker with his attendant. We regularly exchange greetings and I am impressed by his regularity and punctuality. Since I generally meet him at the start of the run on Beach road, I don’t want to take a break. I am actually tempted to get his story as it would be inspirational for many, maybe someday!
            I consciously tried to run at a relaxed pace today so that I am able to keep my mind calm and also wish every runner/cyclist who wishes me, An early start had given me that luxury. There was not much of unusual to report in today’s run as the usual people crossed me and attendance was marked by both the parties.
            Even though I was not thirsty when I crossed the AVM water point, and I had the tea leaves still going in my mouth to keep me salivating, I took the drinks break. I have now been getting good response to my greetings from the COC sanitary workers (particularly, the one I had chided earlier when she had wanted to get some money from me instead of greeting!). I reached home at 7:46 AM, a full 3:27 after start for the 32K. Will try the slow stuff tomorrow also!  Finally two days of running without the tyranny of clock!

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