I was away from home for the holiday vacation, and it felt like a long time gone. Long enough that when I got up the morning after we returned, put on my running shoes, and headed out the door—well, it all felt a little unfamiliar to me, actually.
There were a lot of reasons for that feeling. I ran alone—no dogs, no Kara—which is highly unusual for me. I ran out my door and down my street, and did the entire run on pavement, through my town—also highly unusual for me. And I listened to music. I never listen to music when I run.
But it turned out to be the perfect way to start the New Year. A fresh look at where I live—with theme music. Like one of those montage sequences in a movie, when the filmmaker takes you on a highlights tour of the journey leading up to the climax. It sounds hokey, but those movie moments do pull on my emotions, and what can I say? This run did the same thing: The bakery at the end of my block filling the air with baking-bread smells. The sledding hill sparkling white with snow, across the bridge at our famous Round Church. The bright, moveable chicken coop at the farm on the corner. Down the road, peace flags gently swaying on a neighbor’s front porch. A wave out the window of familiar car. A cyclist wishing me a happy new year as he passed by.
All to the rhythms of Paula Cole, the Spanish Harlem Orchestra and Ne-Yo. I fell in love with home all over again.
Cath Crowley wrote a gorgeous book called A Little Wanting Song, and Charlie, one of the main characters in it, experiences her life through the filter of music. “Everything in the world’s got a voice,” she says. “Most people don’t hear hard enough is all.”
Yes. I agree. Soon I’ll go back to running in the woods and listening to whatever songs the trees have to sing to me. My soundtracked run was a good reminder of this.
Happy New Year to you all.