7 August 2022

Ratcheted a notch higher

Sort of goaded by those medals, attempted a longer run (8K) today. Also, to relive the old days, went back to Fowler Park trail. The good news is that I was able to finish the course in 80 degree heat without losing a limb or two. More heartening was that the run shaved 30 seconds off my usual pace to 10:53 min/mile.

But the trail itself is a mess. Fowler Park trail is closed on one side. There was only a fraction of the number of people I used to see 4-5 years back. And the trailhead was infested with carpenter ants leaving little space to stretch out.

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7 August 2022

Speaking of real life puzzles…

Here is another question that has bewildered me (like that “Enter Only” sign that I wrote about before).

Every morning, before daybreak, I come out and sit in our balcony with my cup of tea. It is very calming to watch the early morning walkers and runners occasionally go by in the relative quietness of the dawn. And then, ever so often, a mail truck pulls up in the post office in front of our house and goes thru the exact same steps every day. It is fun to watch how the eighteen wheeler that shows up around 6:05 will go all around the parking lot after loading/unloading instead of exiting directly. And that is to give itself a lot of maneuvering space at the turn for exit.

On a Sunday like this, usually there is no activity in the post office. You can see many of the mail vans sitting idly in the lot. And that brings me to my question.

Check out the zoomed in picture of the vans. Do you notice how every single mail van has on the roof – what looks like a rusted out brown patch – on the right front (as you face the van)? The patterns are very similar too (the sizes vary a little). Now this being a mail van, this is the non-driver’s side.

For the life of me, I cannot surmise why does each and every mail van have that patch on the roof? Does anybody know?

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6 August 2022

Can you explain this?

Every time I go out to boat, this sign as we enter the parking lot confuses me. Do you see the problem? I am coming along the road (which is one way anyways) and then I see this sign as I enter the lot. What is the big point putting a sign “Enter only” on my side? What else can I do?

I understand that sign being on the other side to warn anybody attempting to come the other way that you cannot exit there – it is an entrance only point. But why for me?

Never quite figured that one out.

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5 August 2022

An evening with the Sivasubramaniams

Thanks to the effort of Lakshmi, Sharmila and I got together with Anand and his family this evening. Original plan got a bit washed away by the rains but we adjusted the plans and still put in a dinner and a walk. Brought a lot of the old Chennai days (where Anand and I went to undergraduate school together) and the Tamizh jokes back. Now that both their children will go to Georgia Tech, I hope to see more of them!

5 August 2022

Lunch with good old Tom!

Tom and I would often see each other in the corridors of Equifax. After leaving the company, I used to run into him once in a while when he would be running too in Fowler Park. Then, for a couple of years we did not met. Other than the birthday calls, in fact, we had not talked much either.

Suddenly, a few weeks back, I got a message from him that his dad has been moved to a hospice. Since I volunteer in hospices, we were going to talk about what to expect and what not to expect. But the next day, I got a message that his dad had transitioned.

Today, we talked a lot about how to cope with a father’s demise and priorities in life in general. It was good to see good old Tom again!

5 August 2022

This is not going to end well

Originally, I had contemplated on throwing away all my running hardware while switching houses. I had learnt way late in my running career that the medals you win in running is referred to as “hardware” by runners. Which, as a computer engineer, raised many a question in my mind. But I let them pass.

As I was mentioning, with my running distances reduced mostly to a few miles and that too at a pace that would not cause a sloth to raise an eyebrow, should they have eyebrows, the hardware had lost a lot of their significance. Except that one particular one from the Original Marathon in Athens, I guess.

While unpacking boxes in the new house, I chanced upon these. Looks like Sharmila had decided not put them in the throw-way pile, after all. However, I was still unsure of what to do with them. They lay on my small work area for a couple of weeks.

During this weekend’s bout of reducing entropy in my work area, I had to decide in a quick moment what to do with them. And in one of those Daniel Kahneman’s “fast thinking” moment, decided to keep them. Not only that, I took upon myself to order a shelf from Amazon to put them up for display.

And there they sit/hang now. They are carefully placed in a wall so as to be not visible to any casual onlooker unless you enter my workspace. Figured it would save me from answering how come I race no more. Which will unduly bring focus to how old I have become and all the body parts that ache and so on.

There has been one glitch in my carefully laid out plans though. You see, while nobody else goes to my work area much, I personally do. Multiple times a day. And every time I see those medals, I involuntarily stop for a nano second. The thoughts of “Could I ???? Should I ????” flash thru my consciousness. And lately, those flashes are spending a little more time than a self righteous flash should.

Oh! Boy!!! I have this uncanny foreboding that this is not going to end well for my joints.

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