I was running alone down a residential street when a woman, also running, turned into the street in front of me going the same direction. I was very happy about this coincidence, so I picked up the pace until I was at her side.
“Pardon me, Miss, I noticed when you turned onto this street, you failed to head check right.”
She glanced at me and didn’t reply right away. Finally she said, “If you’re a cop, I can tell you that I always look before turning. Where did you come from anyway?”
“I was running down the middle of the street. If you had head checked, you would’ve seen me.”
“Does that mean I’m getting a ticket?”
I told her that I usually give a warning for first offenses and then admitted I was just trying to be funny, and maybe I should’ve come up with something better. She didn’t seem to mind though because as we ran side by side, she seemed comfortable with my presence.
“May I inquire how far you’re running today?” I asked.
“I’m headed to the bluff. I’m gonna get on a trail and take it downtown. I have a route through the neighborhood coming back. It’s about seven miles.”
We were coming up to an intersection where I needed to turn. I was trying to think of something more clever to say than the cop bit, but nothing was coming to mind.
“So, I notice you’ve taken a little vacation from the Manito Running Club,” I said.
“Yeah, but I got a lot going on, Jim. I’m working through something. I haven’t forgotten about you guys, though. I’ll be back.”
I told Petra that I needed to take the next turn. I wished her a good run and expressed my sympathies for whatever she was going through.
Petra stopped at the intersection and told me it really wasn’t that big a deal and apologized for making it sound like it was. “Byron and I are breaking up. We…I’m just trying to keep it friendly.”
She gave me a smile, I wished her good luck, and we went our separate ways.