I have been moderately successful the last two days.
After shooting for a mile-long run on Thursday and only making it about 0.8 miles, Friday was my last shot. Since I wouldn’t have another chance to run in the morning (unless I get up with the sun – unlikely), I had to hit the mile mark yesterday. And I made it! Not as cleanly as I was hoping though. Due to the way the markers are set, I think the loop is about 1.1 miles long. After a half-mile, my muscles were burning, and I knew I wouldn’t make it, so I walked a tenth of a mile. Then another quarter mile later, I paused for a minute or two, prepping myself for the last quarter mile. I can imagine how amusing this must sound to runners, but I am not yet a member of that elite crowd, and it’s tough work getting there! 😉 So technically I achieved my goal…but I still want to run a non-stop mile.
Then today I checked off the Casco Viejo shopping visit. I am officially done seeking out opportunities to spend money (food aside)!
Inevitably I wandered around some. The area really isn’t that big, but I enjoyed a delightful sea breeze off the Pacific. Although I don’t see the ocean all that much, since the house is a bit inland, I will miss its proximity when I return to central WA. I also made something of an effort to be social and stopped by Dave’s English school. He was in the middle of a 4 hour-long Level 2 class, and I stuck around for a while and helped out. It reminded me that while part of me likes the idea of being in a classroom, the other (more dominant) part does not want the responsibility of being in charge.
The school is right on the edge of El Chorillo – some would argue two blocks on the “wrong” side. It is fascinating and disquieting, the self-perpetuating cycle of fear and intimidation. When I look around objectively, I see other people. Sure they’re different than me, but why am I afraid (perhaps wary is a better word) of them? I am told to watch out for that area of town – which isn’t to say directly the people, but then, it’s probably not the architecture. Sure, some people are desperate because they are strung out on drugs or looking for another fix they can’t afford, but why do they become untouchable? Why do I contribute to this by not making eye contact? Do I refrain from taking pictures because it feels like I’m exploiting or laughing at or looking down on a lifestyle that is different than mine, or because I know my camera is conspicuous and I don’t want to stand out?
I have been blessed, even privileged, and I don’t think that’s something to apologize for. As long as it does not become a point of division or superiority.
I have no conclusion, just some thoughts. This trip/adventure/interlude (I’m not quite sure what to call it) has been abundant with fodder for deep thinking.
And, although I’m sure there is some analogy I could make regarding the closing picture, I don’t think these posts out enough. So, here’s a picture of a door that I just rather liked.