Today is an Indian Summer day.
New England has this sort of median time between summer and winter that weaves through the autumn called Indian Summer. These are descriptions of days that smell like fall but are warm enough to be like summer. The nights are clearly autumn in nature when radiational cooling causing temperatures to quickly drop, but the days are delightful.
After last night's rain, the river is high, the streets still have spots where the water is puddled, the asphalt dark with moisture as the water evaporates. The leaves are bright on the ground and on the trees - looking like a world afire - and the air is crisp. Unlike the cloyingly humid days of summer, Indian Summer is literally a breath of fresh air.
On such days, running is a joyous activity.
But I've been a bad Pika. I haven't been stretching after my runs lately and today I felt it, tempering the joy with little twinges of pain reminding me I'm not as young as I used to be. What was going to be a three mile push turned into a mile and a half easy tempo run as my shins cried out, "Remember us? You've been ignoring us and we will not be ignored!"
My calves echoed the sentiment as well, but let the shins do the bulk of the talking.
I know these aren't shin splints. Believe me, as someone who lived with them for an extended time both as an aerobics instructor in the mid 80's and a member of a dance troupe, these aren't shin splints but the muscles around everything reminding me I'm not as young as I used to be.
Still, today's run was truly enjoyable. If for no other reason than to stride through the fallen leaves and breathe the clean air that comes after a rainfall.