|Here I am in Central Park. The one and only Central Park!|
|Recipe for getting lost.|
I pulled on my coolest running outfit. Magically, looking like a runner, made me feel like a runner! My directionally savvy hubby had shown me the map, traced my route, prepped me and made sure we both had our cell phones on sound AND vibrate. He assured me that he saw lots of female runners running solo during his early morning run, many were plugged into their iPods. He wasn't the least bit worried about my safety. I, on the other hand wasn't so sure. "Only thing we have to fear is fear itself", or so says FDR. I was about to find out I thought as I put on a brave face and headed out of the quiet, security of my hotel and onto the bustling streets of NYC. At the very least, I would run a mere two symbolic miles in Central Park. At best, I would run a nice 6.1 mile loop.
Taxis clogged up the streets honking their impatient horns. So many people, all in such a great hurry. I got caught up in the palatable energy and clocked my first half mile at sub-nine minute pace. Smokin' for me! A homeless man going the opposite direction saw me coming, jokingly imitated my running and called me "Speedy". That's right, Speedy. That's me. I ran right by the neon lights of Times Square, down Broadway and alongside the building in which the David Letterman show is filmed.
|My family in Times Square the day we arrived all starry eyed and jet lagged in NYC|
|Lots of action on Columbus Circle|
|Notice from left to right, runners, cyclers, motorists sharing the road.|
|Central Park Drive around the boundary of the park. Inside the park is for foot traffic only.|
I felt utterly and completely safe. I was surrounded by people, none of whom looked the least bit shady. It was a beautiful day with a clear blue sky. Fuck it, I'm going in! What's the worst that could happen? I get lost and have to ask a stranger for directions? I have to hail a cab to take me back to the hotel? I have to call Steve and confess that I wandered off course and needed his support? This was a chance of a lifetime and I wasn't going to limit the opportunity by being fearful of getting lost. I always get lost!
Into the belly of the park I went, in search of its treasures. I ran alongside the Central Park Zoo and caught a glimpse of the harbor seals swimming in their tank. Just as I ran underneath the brick archway, the Delacorte Music Clock animals circled around as the clock played a sweet song. I spotted the "Checkers House" where they filmed "Searching for Bobby Fischer". I was spellbound the entire run. Here is a peek at just a few of the exquisite sights I saw:
I have seen countless romantic comedies where happy couples walked across or shared a kiss atop this charming bridge
|One of the many bodies of water. I was looking for the Jacqueline Onassis Reservoir, but never found it.|
|Trees, plants, grass, flowers all within the heart of New York City|
|The city and the park meet|