Tuesday, February 1

Running in Franklin.

[This is a return to stories of our trip out east at the end of December.]

Our first morning in Franklin, I was determined to run in spite of the cold, piles of snow and icy conditions. I bundled up and headed out.

My plan was to run along the hilly, twisty road that runs through a relatively new subdivision in the area. I ran on it a few years ago when we were there in the fall and I remembered it being a challenging but a good run. And since the roads were icy, I wanted to run where there would not be much traffic.

I headed up the hill and found the road to be a sheet of ice, but there was enough powder on it for me to run without slipping. It was a beautiful morning in the woods. Cold but not too cold for running. And so peaceful and quiet.

A ways up the hill, I noticed some animal tracks in the snow. They looked like dog tracks so I thought, "oh, someone must have walked their dog earlier this morning."

Kept running.

I saw more tracks, this time going across the road and down the hill. I thought that was a little odd but figured the dog must have been off its leash.

Then I realized that there were not any human tracks to go with the animal tracks.

Considering that I was in a somewhat isolated area in the woods (the subdivision houses are few and far between), a tiny bit of anxiety set in.

My first thought was BEAR. There are a lot of bears in the area. Will's parents often find them hanging out on their back patio during the summer. But no, bears hibernate during the winter.

My second thought was COUGAR. Cats don't sleep through the winter. Will has told me lots of stories about cougars in North Carolina.

Great. I am going to get attacked by a cougar on my morning run.

But really the paw prints don't really look like big cat prints. The seed was planted though.

I keep running all the while trying to remember what one is supposed to do if a cougar attacks. All I can remember is that they often attack from behind so I keep turning around. The other thing I remember is that you are supposed to make yourself as big as possible.

Okay, yeah, how am I supposed to make myself big enough to scare off a cougar.

I run around a few more turns in the road, looking at the far apart houses, trying not to give into my paranoia. But the road is super icy and I realize that going down it could be problematic.

And cougars!

So finally I turn around and down as quickly as I can. The ice is much harder to be sure footed on going down, but I make it without falling. And without getting attacked by a cougar.

I want to keep running so I head down to the main road just to check things out. It's still pretty icy too and there are cars on it so I decide not to continue that way. I head back on the smaller road and start seeing animal tracks again. Down from the mountain, it doesn't scare me as much so I go ahead and run all the way out to end of that road and then back to the house. The snow was sparkling in the morning light and it was so nice to be out in the country.

When I told Bill, my father-in-law, about the tracks, he told me that they were probably coyote tracks.

Ooooooh, coyotes! That makes sense since they looked like dog tracks.

I wouldn't have been so paranoid if I had thought of coyotes since they want to avoid me as much as I want to avoid them.

I can be so silly sometimes.

We hibernated ourselves the rest of the day since the roads were too icy for my car to make it out to town. We were quite content to stay warm and cozy in the house, knitting, watching tv and hanging with Will's folks.

Will and I took a walk late in the afternoon and I took more photos, mostly with the TLR which still haven't been developed. So yay, I'll have winter vacation photos for you in the spring!

Hope yinz are staying warm. It is FREEZING here. I don't know that it got higher than 10 degrees today and tomorrow is more of the same. And sadly the big snowstorm they predicted still hasn't arrived. East coast friends, send us some of your snow please!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.