Monday, 24 February 2014

Running around

It is the last week of summer but it feels like the season has already turned here on the south coast. The mornings are cool and misty and there is the slightest bight in the air that whispers to me promises of autumn. But the days are still hot and dry and if you slept in until the sun was high in the sky (which just does not happen in this house) you would never know that summer was nearly gone.

I crept out of bed with Thea just as the sun was rising yesterday, intending to slip on my running shoes and make a dash for the river before anyone realised we were up. But a procession of three tousled blond heads tripping out of the boys' room before I could reach the back door put paid to that idea. Instead they quickly dressed and negotiated how they were going to join me on my early Sunday run, while Grant took his turn at a weekend sleep in. Lewis hopped on his bike, Quinn climbed in next to Thea and Darcy climbed onto the couch, annoyed that he would have to share my company and preferring to forgo it entirely.

Down the hill we thundered and into the river valley, where the mist curled off the water like smoke, and spectres of pelicans loomed through the morning light that slanted sideways through the paperbarks. Across the old railway bridge, where the river opens out into the wide blue inlet, then back along the swampy eastern bank, the gravel crunching underfoot and the dried fronds of watsonia flicking against the sides of the trailer.

We were back up the hill and flipping pancakes before the mist had lifted, my mood and mind buoyed by the blood pumping through my veins; the water; the forest; the call of the birds as we tripped beneath the canopy and the chatter of my three year old as he named each one in turn. While more sleep would always be a welcome thing, getting up and getting out is surely the next best thing. It is my thrice-weekly therapy, this forest loop of mine.

While perhaps one day I will take my camera along with me on my run, I prefer to keep my hands on the handlebar and my heart-rate steady. So here are some shots of the kids turning the backyard into a waterpark on the weekend instead.

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