Running can be an adventure. Here are some highlights from my run today:

1. While stretching at the beginning of my run, I bend over and find myself nose-to-nose with something glittery. What is this gray, shimmering little oval? A Christmas ornament? Oh, wait . . . no. It’s a CRACK PIPE.

2. I usually run along a river jetty to the beach. A river jetty is a nice way of saying describing a giant sewer of wasting water that dumps into the ocean. It’s also the prime spot for homeless people in Orange County. Today, I ran by a lot of poop. I don’t think it was from a dog.

3. Halfway down the jetty path, I discovered that the water bottle attached to my belt clip had spilled all over my skirt. Shocking, right? My skirt was drenched, and it made it look like I had peed my pants. It didn’t feel great, and I still had four miles to go.

4. At the underpass where the river jetty opens onto the sand, the trail was completely flooded. Which meant I either had to turn back, or climb up into the side of the bridge and scale my way along a 45-degree angle encampment. I scaled it, baby.


5. As I reached the packed sand, I found myself alone on a vast beach. Just me . . . and a guy wearing an orange jumpsuit. I assume he was one of the felons that gets driven over in a team from the prison to do beach cleanup. I’m not sure where his team was, or where the warden was, either. I do know that I ran a little faster than usual.

6. After passing the lone criminal, I had another stretch of solitude, until I came upon an old man in a trenchcoat who was yelling at the water. He was really, really angry with the sea this morning. When I ran back by him about 20 minutes later, he was still yelling.

7. I’d tell you about the randomly discarded condoms, but that is such a common sight on this route that it seems boring to even mention it.

8. I also passed by a plastic bag that had been washed up onto the shore, with a suspicious-looking powdery substance inside. But I came upon this several miles from where I saw the crackpipe. So, you know . . . BUMMER.

9. I decided to take a different route back up to the river trail, to try to avoid the flooded area. Instead, I found out that the trail did not continue up the other side of the jetty under the bridge. So I had to duck and crawl through a ditch that was about 3 feet high to get to the other side of PCH.

And, the most insane part of my run today:

10. When I left the house, I casually mentioned to Mark that it would just be a short run today. “I’ll probably just do 5 or 6 miles,” I heard myself saying. And I wasn’t joking.

**Go read more about why I’m running at this post.