I worked from home today waiting on a delivery for Cécile’s new job. I don’t mind working at home as I find the silence refreshing and I can get an awful lot of writing done. It also means that I can head out for a run not when I get home from work, but rather when I finish for the day. The practical effect is that I am out the door about half an hour earlier than if I made the commute home.
I had a somewhat heavy day yesterday and, with this being another +100km week, this represented a big chunk of that distance. Today I wanted something nice and steady, maybe with a little exploring to keep things interesting, and no more than 90 minutes or so on my feet. As Jamie is back tomorrow and I’ll be only able to get a short morning run in before I’m due at work at 7am, I didn’t want to take this one too hard. A second hard run inside of 12 hours can sometimes be quite the bitch and I don’t need that sort of stress in this base-building phase of the year.
I thought I might try something I had considered a couple of times and which, in my mind, was a simple ‘up and over’. Lyon is famous for being a major city on two rivers – the Soane and the Rhone – and crossing between the two is not complicated or time-consuming when you are in the city centre. However, the further you move out of the city, the greater the distance between the two rivers to traverse becomes. My idea was to head down the Rhone river for a few kilometres, hook up and over the Caluire and Cuire plateau, and then drop down to the Soane and follow it to the Old City where I had a package to pick up.
Dropping down from the Pentes to the trail alongside the Rhone was no issue tonight as all the traffic lights worked in my favor for once. There were a couple of dog walkers and the odd cyclist out and about, but otherwise I had the trail entirely to myself as the sun started to set. I turned under the railway line at Crepieux la Pape and headed up my new favorite hill, then hooked left into Caluire and Cuire.
Traffic was heavy here, especially at the bottleneck traffic signals. I passed and re-passed some of the same commuters a couple of times which I always imagine must be frustrating. Is there anything that says ‘hardly moving at all’ than a runner outpacing you? After crossing the plateau, I dropped down a nice series of switchbacks, caught my breath at a traffic signal at the bottom of the hill, then crossed over the Soane at the Isle Barbe.
From there it was a straight run back into town, made difficult only by the puddles that had swelled to overtake the entire path. I dodged the ones that I could until, eventually, there were some that were so big that I had no choice but to splash through. The new shoes held up well to the inundation and cleared the water fast. My socks stayed a little wet, of course, but I didn’t feel like I was sloshing about.
The last two kilometres were smooth as I traced the dual use path along the Soane towards the Old City. I had not picked up a package from this particular location before and – after checking it out on Google Maps – had determined it was a Tabac store next to a reggae bar. With no more than this description in mind, I scanned the street next to me for the correct address and, to my surprise, found it exactly where I expected it to be. Who says I don’t know my reggae stores, huh?
I stopped the clock, collected my package – new headphones for running as the current ones are about to give up the ghost – and texted Cécile who was just a few hundred metres away. We made the walk up the hill together and returned home: her to a shiny new computer for her new job starting Monday, and me to a welcome hot shower.