Seebo's Run

A running commentary on my training and whatever else emerges from that.

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Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Friday, May 27, 2005

So Rave Run

There is a column of that name in Runner's World.

The times I've seen it, the featured runs have been across mountains and through flowering fields and with other landscapes that look like they came from a National Geographic spread.

My rave run today was through West Philly. I had the day off and E was out of town, which let me leave the house with T as he biked to school. After I dropped him off I took off on the Acme Loop that I've been doing. Instead of going around the distribution center, however, I went straight up 54th St. and through the Wynnefield and Overbrook neighborhoods before circling back onto more familiar West Philly streets.

So what made this run so rave? In contrast to recent days it was gloriously sunny out, which added an almost technicolor perspective to the run. Leaving two and a half hours later not only brightened things, but it also livened them up. At 6 am the neighborhoods are physical, at 9 am they are ecological, with people and bustle and teeming with life.

The run also had a pioneering aspect to it. Wynnefield and Overbrook lie in the far northwest part of West Philly (not to be confused with the NW section of Phila) that I've never been through. Going up 54th Street was entering terra incognita. The neighborhood changed from working class to middle class to distinctly upper middle class, and by the time I hit Wynnefield Road the streets had become curvier and greener with solid, detached, grey-stone houses and big yards. From the looks of it this is the neighborhood of Philadelphia's black bourgeoisie (to borrow Frazier's term). Then crossing 63rd Street (on Woodbine) the houses again became smaller and spaced closer together, and by the time I turned onto 64th Street and headed back south, I was back in the land of 2-story rowhouses with corner bars, grocery stores, and the odd tattoo parlor and Chinese takeout here and there. It still amazes me how much area there is to explore so close to my house. After running down streets for several years, I can just go straight where I otherwise would have turned left and its like being in a different world.

I'll need to bring a camera with me to make my next Rave Run complete.

And finally, I count this as the first run of the summer. Warm sunny day and I'm out there for the joy of putting in miles. Summertime and the running is indeed easy. May there be many more of these in the upcoming months.

10 miles in 78:13.


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