Sunday, 12 June 2011


Had a couple of encounters with the law lately.
First up was work related, where we were helping Lothian and Borders finest in their "case of the dastardly theft of the Tattoo stand" enquiries, when two massive lorry loads of steel girders were stolen en route to Edinburgh Castle.
Not being the world's greatest lover of bagpipe music or mass staged shortbread tin musical extravaganzas my quip to the detective involved that perhaps they should be searching for a "music lover" was met with a stern ticking off and a reprimand that this was "no laughing matter"..

Anyway. Yesterday saw me come face to face with an even more serious law - Traprain Law.
It's a couple of years since I've done this race and, if I'm honest, as I stood at the kitchen window yesterday watching the rain hammer down I did consider allowing my self imposed exile to roll over for yet another year.
But "faint heart" and all that.. I missed out on the Haddington 10k last week and I was keen to get out there with a number on my chest again.
We got down to East Linton and the registration tent in the local park in loads of time. It's usually busy down there... not with runners but with locals out enjoying the gala. Sadly yesterdays monsoon had really put paid to that and there was nowt but a few empty stalls and an empty tea tent.
Luckily though runners are made of harder stuff than most and in no time a sizable crowd had gathered for the race.
It was cold as well as wet so rather than hand about chatting I headed out of East Linton on my own, for a bit of a longer warm up than usual and got back into the playing field with just enough time for a "pit stop" and to change out of my top and into the vest.
A lot of this race is along very narrow paths by the side of the river, so I knew that the first half mile or so it is pretty important to try to get into the sort of place you want to be for most of the race. Which is why by the time we got onto the riverside path and there were three Portobello runners in about the top six I knew "oh well, that's the team prize sorted then".
For a lot of the way along by the path Richard, Grant and me were pretty much running together and it soon became apparent that there was going to be a bit of a race within a race for the Dunbar places.
The river crossing was fairly easy this year, as was the climb up the steep bank at the other side.
However, the one thing that did let me down yesterday was my new hat. It has failed, I'm afraid to say, its first test in really bad rain. By the time we were climbing up towards the foot of the Law I couldn't see a bloody thing with my glasses on and was reduced to running along with them in my hand, which I knew would be a problem when it came to the steep climb. Luckily Jim, Val and Theressa were out spectating at this point so I threw my glasses to Theressa to look after for me (well actually, because I couldn't really see her I actually threw them wide onto the bonnet of someones car!).

The climb was fairly tricky because of the wet and I found myself using the rope that gets put up for the event to haul myself up. By this time Grant was ahead of me and we had both pulled away slightly from Richard.
But then the descent. Not my speciality and neither it has to be said is it Grants! They were queuing up to pass me on the way down! I was busy hopping and skipping down like a jessie and Richard ( and quite a few others) came hurtling past me.
Once we were down and back onto the road though I just tried to crank it up half a gear or so and managed to reel in all those who had passed me on the drop.
The run back into East Linton was fairly uneventful and I just kept the head down and tried to catch Grant..(I didn't).
Clocked 44:25 which I was fairly happy with. Not my best time, but a little faster than the last outing.

Once we'd all finished we made our way to the tea tent in an attempt to keep warm while we waited on the prize giving. Rhona was first lady and Dunbar's only representative on the prize list and was awarded with what appears to be a large rock stuck on a plank of wood.... and alcohol. Loads of alcohol.
It's amazing really how often alcohol is given away at prize givings. As I expected, Portobello walked away with the team prize... alcohol. I'm sure they must win beer at every race they go to... maybe if they drank it they might slow down a bit - give others a chance.

Out for about 16 miles this morning - mainly on the road and mostly flat. Lovely. That's what running should be like.

No comments: