West Shewa, Ethiopia
We’ve had a couple of days with big storms, and the flat roof on the rooms makes it sound like the end of the world. A strange one today, with thunder clapping away a good 20 minutes before the rain came, and yet it was still sunny out. The mornings are still beautiful, mind, with sun till around midday, and then patchy sun and cloud.
I’ve been off the running for a couple of days. That quicker session has done something odd to the tendon leading from left knee to quad, but it’s a problem I’ve had before and if it’s not better tomorrow then it should be by Monday. A couple of days in the gym shouldn’t do too much harm, though it is a bit of a trial putting enough time in on the exercise bike to make up for the lack of a run. It has been interesting watching other runners go through their circuits, though. Of a morning I usually have the place to myself, as everyone else is out lapping the satellite field, but in the afternoon runners are plyometrically (a word I have heard and decided fits here, rather than knowing it does) bounding the length of the gym, twisting bodies into improbable shapes, and stepping through a line of hurdles carrying weights. It makes my few physio exercises seem a bit of an afterthought, and I can see why the physio always says “do you stretch?”. Ah, stretch like that, a good solid session just of stretching. I can do more here, and hope it gets me into the habit, but I have adjusted very quickly to having the time to build in a couple of workouts a day, around 8.30 and 5.30 whilst wondering if I should do some stretching at, say, 3.00. Plus reading a book a day, of course.
English Dr Chris has joined us, so the native English-speaking contingent has grown. Weekends here are a little busier, with families staying in the hotel, it seems, perhaps on their way out of Addis to the hills, and others coming for lunch. A group were at one of the clusters of tables as I walked to the restaurant for my own lunch, and their little girls seemed particularly pleased to see me, waving and jumping around excitedly. Can’t think I can have been the first white face they’ve seen, but perhaps still enough of a rarity to be exciting. In general, though, wherever I go people are friendly, from those by the side of the road smiling and waving, to fellow runners encouraging those of us lapping the field while they are cooling down and the kids who like to run along with us.
Tomorrow I hope for a run, though perhaps saving the long one until Monday.
Summary: time on feet, 0, 0km, bike sessions 4, podcasts caught up on 3.