I do not know the connection between my being on facebook and my blogging. My literary juices seem to have dried up starved of the vitamin ‘Likes’. Two things happened over this weekend to force me to wield the keyboard again. The first was a father and daughter duo emerging out of the morning darkness on my Saturday run over the Napier Bridge on the river Couum, the father shouting out to me as he passed me that I was missed on the facebook. It felt nothing less than what famed creator of Sherlock Holmes would have felt after he had to bow to public pressure to resurrect the character after having dumped him in the Reichenbach Falls.
The second event was much more shattering, Biscuit’s cousin and my brother’s pet ‘Tutu’ breathed his last around midnight this last Sunday. I woke to this heartbreaking message from my brother and the last line made me feel my heart would burst, he had written that he would wake up alone at 3 AM without Tutu’s company. I could fully relate to this. When people ask me about my regularity in running, I invariably credit it to the unsung hero, Biscuit, who is next to me as soon as the alarm goes irrespective of the time. I did not have the courage to speak to my brother, I left him a message knowing fully well that empty words cannot be any good for the loss he and his family have had.
I messaged him to not to run alone for a few days till he recovers a little. I for myself was sure to pay homage to the good soul in the only way I know, running a full marathon! I had considered a day of fasting, spinning and prayer, but, rejected the fasting part knowing how much he loved hogging. I am sure he would not have liked his family to punish themselves by abstaining from food. I still cannot forget the way he used to gobble up chewstix while Biscuit when confronted with the same treat used to lick and soften it for hours. I hope he gets his fill of chewstix wherever Dogs go after spending their allotted time on earth (My brother later told me that he was buried with enough stock of his favorite chewstix, a.k.a. Tutenkhamem, his namesake!
I have been thinking about why such loss affects us so deeply, my guess is that we try to imagine the same loss for ourselves and the enormity of it does the rest. Biscuit is still surprised why we all are being so nice to him, I am sure he is not complaining! Every dog I encountered during the run and Labradors in particular sent fresh bouts of pain through my heart. I saw an attendant shepherding three Labs on a leash, instantly, I imagined Tutu on an imaginary fourth leash making up the quartet! I just hope the family gets over this if it is at all possible. As for Tutu, I am sure he must be spreading happiness as is their wont at a place which could only be heaven (I cannot imagine a heaven without Dogs and no Dog does anything to go anywhere other than heaven), or, if they do not go to heaven, I hope I go to where Dogs go after dying as one anonymous writer has famously said!
I had the company of a barefoot runner for the last loop and he loved the billiard top surface around the Island ground loop. To a regular passerby who made a face on crossing me commenting to his partner that I run barefoot everyday (to the tone of ‘What do you do to a problem like Maria’!). I told him I am a little mad which seemed to satisfy him. I told my runner friend that I was not wrong, I was trying to take my passion of running to the limits of madness, Isn’t there a very fine line between madness and passion! The run even at a leisurely pace got me home in 4h:35m.
Today morning when I lined up for my run, a group of workers, who are engaged in putting up a steel median on the road outside the colony, were relaxing after their graveyard shift. One of them asked me why I do not wear shoes. Generally, the tone of such queries is one of pity and awe. I disabused him that the act was deliberate as it helped me recover from my runs quicker. One of them asked if Drivers of trains stayed in the colony I was coming out from, I quipped the colony has drivers of such drivers. He correctly guessed that we must be officers. My leg even if a little painful at the start has been getting better and today’s weekday quota of 32K was downed in 3h:31m!