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Tracie Skarbo was motivated to write by her father, who was her biggest supporter. “He was always behind me, rallying me on with my writing. I would always see him with a book in hand. He gave me a great appreciation for the written word, and the power and responsibility that writers have to shape those who read their words. He also taught me to respect nature and to value the beauty within it; my reflections on my environment are just an extension of this.” Skarbo was raised on Vancouver Island and is working on her next two books.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Laced Up Confessionals Part Five

Monday started off like so many others in the past 3 months, fat drops of rain racing each other to annihilation upon the face of the earth.  Some hitting so hard that it made it look like it was raining skywards.  Warm mugs of coffee couldn’t chase away the yawns that percolated through my day, nor could they cure a chill that had me donning layer after layer of cotton and wishing I had fur. 
I picked up the local paper only to be informed that we had now crossed over into days of water restrictions.  I smirked at the irony of it all.  Wondering why such a concept would be needed in the rainy season of rainforest country.
Run time came closer and the rain refused to release its squeeze on the big pouty clouds.  I envisioned some of the drops making sure others were on their way down before making their own kamikaze dive through the cold air. 
On the drive through town I wondered how many would show.  I knew I would not be alone in my efforts because it was a clinic night which meant a talk on a certain subject or a guest speaker, and these seemed to draw a larger crowd no matter what the weather.
Tonight’s topic was Safety.  What to wear to be seen by traffic, which places were better to run then others and why.  What to do when running alone, and lots of advice to run in pairs or packs,  especially around one of our most picturesque lakes which also doubles as the running Mecca of the city.  The instructors warned us that the resident male flasher was still at work.  Although this man had been caught and charged several times for his outdoorsy breeches of etiquette, he continues to return to the same place as before, business as usual.  Apparently not much more can be done about this man and his mental illness until he ups the level of his actions.  This of course upset most of the runners in the clinic, but I’ve known about this guy for a year and a half and have yet to see his antics.  I am not a regular of the lake though and perhaps this is why.
Still, we as runners have to know that there is risk out there.  There are cars, bikes, skateboarders, roller-bladers, dogs, doggie doo-doo, and people to dodge and there are the elements and injuries to be dealt with. 
Even so, steps can be taken to reduce conflicts where they arise, making enjoyable and worthwhile.
So lace up, and join the throng of walkers and runners in your area.  Whether for fitness or the social aspects of the activity, you will be so glad you did!

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