Serendipitously found myself walking on the beach at 5:30 this morning. It wasn’t the plan. The plan was to sleep as long as possible so that I would be fresh to pace my runner for the last fifteen miles of her 62 mile race later today. But when I got up for my 4:00 am bathroom trip I noticed a light coming from the crack of her bedroom door. I was surprised to find her sitting there, curled under the covers dressed in full running gear. She was supposed to be at the starting line at 4:00 am.
If you haven’t already heard, Miwok 100k has been shortened to a 60k. The park service has closed part of the course due to high fire danger. That notice came to the race officials at 11:00 pm last night, about the time the runners were warding of butterflies and trying to get a few hours of sleep.
So we all regroup. Our runner now starts her 38 mile run at 8:00 am, and crew and pacers adjust accordingly. That left me and crew member Janet wide awake at 5:00 am with nothing to do but wander the beach. Tough life, right?
With the morning light barely breaking our feet hit the cold sand on the deserted beach. Our early start was rewarded with shore abundant with fresh shells and sand dollars. Even the seagulls were not yet awake. We wandered down the waterline and into the town of Stinson Beach just as the only coffee stand in town was opening. Grateful for the couple of dollars I’d slipped in my pocket, we strolled back blessed with warm coffee for our beach combing return.
And then we saw it, maybe 200 yards off shore, the breach and then the spout of a whale. It surfaced and spouted five more times giving us a full head breach and tail slap as part of it’s display. It was headed home, going north for the summer.
So the lesson this morning is that life changes. We can’t predict it. How would have guessed the long standing Miwok race would be a 60k instead of a 100k at this last moment? So we change with it, and find our blessings along the way.