Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Lost in my own back yard

Today I was able to take a 1,5-hour break. As I've mentioned before, my employer allows us one hour per week for health promoting activities, but it's very difficult to find time to actually make use of this hour. So we get the chance every third week or so to do that.

Ignoring yesterday's lousy performance on my run to and from work, I planned a 10 km route that would take me sightseeing around this side of Gothenburg, without drifting too far away from work. I'd get a chance to see some new places and revisit some others.

My break didn't start so well. I was delayed at the last minute, which cut off about 15 minutes of my time. I thought about running a shorter round so that I'd get back in time, then decided against it because I felt adventurous. I wanted to run somewhere I hadn't run before, not around the block.

I occasionally looked around at my surroundings

Maps don't really tell you everything. They don't tell you where the cycle paths are, for instance. And, ok, I admit I didn't look at the map so thouroughly. It seemed easy enough: I'd just run parallel to the road, and, after about halfway into my run, turn left at the big junction. Problem was that the cycle path did not want to turn left. It wanted to turn right. That completely threw off my sense of direction. Also, I thought I knew where I was. I didn't.

Thinking you know where you are is much worse than admitting that you don't know where you are. In the second case, you ask for directions. In the first, you stubbornly run around in circles. Lucky for me, the cycle paths around here are usually well equipped with signs pointing you to the right direction. Unlucky for me, I am equipped with a thick head. I proceeded to ignore the sign that clearly pointed me back to where I was supposed to be going, because -again- I thought I knew where I was.

A picture says a thousand words

To make a really long story short, after running around this huge junction in the wrong direction and realising that I was running late (excuse the pun), I grudgingly let the signs guide me back to work. Data information from my Garmin uploaded to my computer later shows that these last kilometres were run in what little old snail-paced me considers speed of light. I arrived at work after 11 km and with just 5 minutes of my break left. I took the quickest shower of my life and then collapsed into a chair with a well deserved sandwich.

There are worse places where one can get lost

There were parts of my run that I didn't enjoy. The start and finish come to mind. The part where I got lost was actually fun, apart from the bit where I got all stressed because I thought I'd have to take the bus back or risk being late (the BUS?? Never!). I did get to see some new places and revisit a neighbourhood that's one of my favourites in this city. I might plan my next long break a little better though...

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