For the past how many years, I’ve been jogging the savannah and environs, with my head down checking my step so that I don’t trip and fall (which by the way, has happened on occasion). My mind is always focussed on something else, somewhere else, solving some issue in my life, or that of others, to the extent that I miss almost everything around me.
Recently I’ve had to change my daily schedule because of work commitments and began jogging early in the morning before sunrise. Jogging in the morning presents a totally different perspective. It’s dark when I start which makes me super aware of my surroundings and the people around me. You begin to raise your head in the first instance for safety, and then when you realise the charm, the beauty and the excitement around you, you keep your head up not wanting to miss out on anything.
The first thing that struck me was the simple fact that you wanted to greet everyone you passed. At first “Good Morning” received severally different responses. Sometimes a grunt, sometimes a suspicious stare, but most times, especially from the more senior gentlemen, a sincere “Morning, Morning” and even a “Morning my Lady”. After just a few days, the return greetings increased considerably and I had made some “morning” friends. One guy almost always seeming to extend his arms with the hope of receiving a “morning” hug as well.
Needless to say, with my head up, I began to smile more, participate more and generally enjoy my run from a more holisitc point of view.
You “meet” so many people. The older gentleman holding his hand’s wife on one side and the leash of his dog on the other (not sure what that symbolises). The animated faces of the three ladies catching up on the gossip while working off those unwanted pounds. The young boy panting and gasping as if he’s about to have his last breath (makes me laugh actually). The father and son making their way up Lady Chancellor hill – son on bike, father in tow.
You also begin to appreciate the beauty around you. The gentle breeze that cools you as you wake up your muscles from their slumber and the views that greet you, every time, without fail, at every turn, each one deserving of a mental picture.
I’ve promised myself to raise my head just a little bit more. It’s amazing how much better the day turns out.