A year ago I was still running roads. An acquaintance of mine ran ultras. We became friends who became good friends who became even better friends, and, after a long time basically fighting it, we ended up lovers. She’s been at the center of my ultra running experience, brief as it thus far is. This year we’ve run nearly every race together, crewed friends together, crewed each other, and hung out at races as spectators and fans…
It’s always a drag when these things end, especially when they end so remotely, by voicemail. My cheap cellphone gave her soft apologetic message a weird metallic sound, & I was left standing in a parking lot in Griffith Park, phone in hand, the high from a beautiful run fading fast. I know myself well enough to realize that it wouldn’t really hit me until the next day. I thought about how our profound love of running is based at least in part on our difficulty dealing with others.
It’s not so much fun watching a person stress out to the point of illness, and realizing the source is apparently her relationship with you. That look of sadness and discomfort in her eyes is a profound bummer. It’s disappointing when you find yourselves getting combative over the things that brought you together in the first place.
In Idyllwild there are pine cones the size of human heads. I still can’t get over that. Here is some black and white film from that too short weekend.