Back to Australia, and back to parkrunning. Last time I did this, I was breaking a 3-month duck, while this time I’ve only missed four Saturdays. Both the sense of familiarity and the relative lack of time meant I was much less keyed-up for this run than for New Farm parkrun back in 2013.
All I had to do was be awake in time to get to the start for 7am. Or is it 8am? Kirra definitely starts at 7, but Queensland has different time to other states – so although I was staying right on the NSW border, I couldn’t dash to Kingscliff for 8, straight afterwards, as that actually starts at the same time. So far so simple, but I had a minor concern that my watch had picked up NSW time, and wasn’t sure how to check.
Anyway, in the end I trusted the watch, it was fine, and I jogged just over 2km to the start. It was pouring with rain, enough to make me put a coat on for the initial jog, though at least it eased off for the run itself. Cue plenty of ‘you brought the weather with you/should be used to this’ gags. The start is easy to find, opposite the large, white ‘Kirra Surf’ building, and right on the main promenade along the beachfront. The course takes you out to the end of the promenade, heading North, for 2km, back along the same route, then continues South past the start/finish for 500m, before looping round to the finish.
I ran reasonably well, though not under 19 minutes as I’d thought I might when running easily the evening before. Still, the first placer set off with intent, had quite a lead within a minute or two and had finished before I completed 4k, so I didn’t even see him on the final out and back, which is pretty unusual. It is a quick course, other than very mild undulations and the two turn around points, just keep powering along the gently curving path.
Other runners were friendly and chatted a while before we all made our way home to dry off after the rain. The latter wasn’t the image I had of Australian running when planning the trip, but it isn’t constant sunshine here. I had a very wet parkrun last time, maybe I’ll be lucky and this will be the only one this time.