Thursday, March 5, 2009
Out with the Old and in with the New!
My new Brooks
Old worn out Brooks
My new shoes are the bomb. Yes, I am in love. I’ve gotten a couple of 5 mile jogs in this week and it’s like running on clouds. Feels so different from the slap, slap, slap against the hard pavement in my old shoes, which are going to shoe heaven very soon. Although, they would make good dog poop scooping shoes….hmmmm. They might have a purpose after all.
I have had several opportunities to run because I’ve spent a couple of night in the park on coyote duty. Let me explain. There are coyotes everywhere out here. I’ve seen them in the parks behind my house, crossing the roads in my neighborhood, hell I’ve even seen one close to downtown. I always see them early in the morning while out on my runs. They’ve never once bothered me, they just run away. One time, one crossed the road in front of Piper and me and sat down to curiously stare at us as we ran by. The thought crossed my mind that it might attack, but as soon as I turned toward it and said “boo”, it turned and scampered off. They are actually kind of cute, but I would never try to cuddle with one. I enjoy my limbs too much. Anyway, one of the Denver suburbs, Greenwood Village, has decided that these little critters are a dangerous threat to society and have hired an exterminator to sit in the city parks and shoot them. Now, I agree, they are a problem, but I think that we should educate people, not have sharp shooters carousing in our parks next to people’s houses. Not only that, but coyotes are sharp critters, if their population starts going down, they compensate by having more babies. They seem to be smarter then the GV city council and its mayor. Anyway, the Humane Society of the US contacted me and asked if I would like to be on “coyote duty”.
“What’s coyote duty?” I asked.
“You basically just have to patrol the parks, watch for the sharp shooter, and scare any of the coyotes away (to give them a natural fear of humans.”
Ok, I can handle this. I have to run at night anyway, so I told them yes.
My first session was on Monday night. I was a little nervous about being in the park after dark with a sharp shooter, so I made sure to pack a headlamp. There aren’t too many coyotes running around Greenwood Village with a headlamp on, so I figured this would distinguish me from them if the shooter caught sight of me. I started my run with my rock in hand (to throw at the coyotes….I know, Rick and Madison are laughing at me too) and decided that I would put in five miles as I was looking for this idiot and coyotes. There was a child’s soccer practice going on and numerous kids at the playground, so I felt pretty safe that there wouldn’t be a shooter that night. However, it got dark, the kids left, and I was alone with my rock. Dark shadows fell over the fields and the trees and I anxiously ran through the dark park. Suddenly, every shadow was a shooter and every noise was a coyote. I squinted trying to see dark shapes (I can’t see very well after dark) and finally gave up. The only way I was going to see a coyote is if it jumped right in front of my face. I finished my run and left the park.
I did the same thing last night. Five mile run and coyote duty. No shooter, no coyotes. The Wildlife Guardians seem to be thinking that our plan is working! The shooter was spotted in another park and even had the audacity to confront one of our monitors. He’s mad because us rock throwing warriors are scaring all of the coyotes away.
Tonight I am doing a three mile tempo run and no coyote duty.