Yesterday, the last of April, and my mother's birthday, a race on the beach.  Ten K up and down the sand, with the clouds of sunrise reflecting, first gray, before the sun has a chance with them, and then the broad strokes of pink and yellow and orange and purple and gray.  And people gathering there on the hard flat surface of the beach near the ocean.  Watching the wind whip up the waves and drive the crest fast upwind.  Race time and more people and rain and the possibility that Space X will launch something from nearby Cape Canaveral, so the first two miles or more during rests, turning around and glancing back over my shoulder to see if it happened.  And it doesn't, so I watch the people on the beach with their phones and cameras aimed toward the cape and if I see someone point or lift their camera or stand up and look, I'll turn around, but I don't.  And I'm running so hard and the wind is blowing back at me that I am surprised when I turn around and suddenly I'm running like the jet-stream, pushed by what was a headwind into remarkable (for me) feats of athleticism--sailing along on the same old beating of the feet in sand, but so much faster, so much lighter, so much more ready to finish this race and . . . and . . . and then what?  So right now it is the race and not to worry about the then what--it will come when the race is over and when I cross the line and press the button on my watch that says that I've done what I've come to do and walk away from the finish line, medal and lei and short breath and all.  And still the wind pushes the ocean and the crests scurry downwind tearing up the surf and everything is done and not done and I'm still not concerned about what comes after because, well, because the beach.


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