|The climb up Malmaison Road|
I locked my truck on Malmaison Road and began shuffling towards the Carroll County Hills at an embarrassingly lazy 10:38 that morning. Within twenty minutes I was climbing out of the flat delta into the loess bluffs of what we here call "the hills." The plan was far from ambitious. I just wanted to go a bit over ten miles, and since "long" and "fast" and "hard" and "easy" are relative terms, this would be my first "long" run in a long time, since last December when I stress-fractured myself in a foolish but fun effort to run from home to Winona. Fun it was before the pain started.
The road bed was damp but not wet and the moisture made for softer footfalls. Perfect. My legs felt flat, however, and I seemed unfit as my already turtle pace slowed to a pathetic 12:00 minute mile while I climbed the big hill, the one that runs out of the flatlands and into the bluffs above. Stopping a couple of times, I snapped pictures of the view from my lofty position overlooking the flat farmland below. Soon the delta was gone, and all that was left was a lonely gravel road. The best kind. The kind I like.
|My company for the run.|
I took walk breaks approximately after every 2.5 miles of shuffling. There was almost no traffic out and the farther I went up the road the fewer the houses were. My only company, besides the trees and my thoughts, were some horses who seemed to find me a curiosity.
|If those walls could talk.|
|A glimpse of the delta below.|