I went for a run today. Which was stupid. I hate running. With a passion that lacks in all other aspects of my life. It’s rather impressive actually. I don’t get any runners high. That inner conversation so many runners go on and on about is more a conversation of self reproach and admonishment. Running and I just don’t really get along.
I do however get along with the color orange. I quite like the color orange. Bright orange. Obnoxious orange. Construction cone orange. I would argue that in the darkness that is the Swedish winter, the bright orange keeps me safe. Now it might seem that these two things are not at all related. But they are.
Because I am the proud owner of a bright orange hat. And bright orange gloves. And bright orange sweatpants. All of which I wore on my run today. To my surprise, I was actually not the only person running in bright orange. Which made me feel like I fit in.
Anyway, as I stumbled along on what some might describe a jog, I noticed a lot of Russian tourists. Spend enough time in Stockholm and the Russian tourists are easy to pick out. Usually I don’t pay much attention, but today was different. Because I was photographed as I ran by. They weren’t even sneaky about it. It was a point and a smile at me by the girlfriend and the camera was brought up and pointed right at me by the boyfriend. Clearly, they were not part of any sort of Russian spy network. Now, as we’ve already established, my boyish good looks and charm soften even the hardest hearts, but it’s not often that Russians are taking pictures of me as I run by.
After that interesting start to my run, I continued on. Sucking wind. Trying not to slip on the ice. Thanking Stockholm’s city workers for laying down a whole lot of sand on the majority of the paths. They did good work. I did not fall. A small victory really.
I managed to get myself stuck in a short, but effective, midday snow flurry. By the time I emerged from the flurry, my once black vest was white, but my bright orange sweatpants roared on. It was about this time that my iPod died. It’s getting old. It’s traveled the world. Turns out that my iPod can’t handle below freezing weather. Like 23 degree Fahrenheit weather. So my run ended in silence and I made it home looking like some sort of strange orange creamsicle.
Welcome to Sweden. And winter runs.