, Blog 3
By Chuck Wells As Told To Ray Hochgesang
“Didn’t Rockard tell you? I got permission from him yesterday.” I dug for my note.
She stopped and shot stares of total disbelief at me.
“No, Mr. Rockard didn’t say anything about letting a bum stay here. What’s your name?”
“Wells, And I used to own this track.”
That made Pigheaded glare a hole through me.
“Look here, Mister, I own it now.”
She tossed her cellphone in her gym bag and started what I thought looked like a series of stretches straight from Neptune. At one point, she had her feet behind her head, and I’m sure something went “Snap, Crackle, POP!” The human pretzel girl freaked me out.
“Now, let’s see what ya got,” she said.
She darted down the track. I followed. The pace proved quick. It took a supreme effort, but I kept up with her. She had a machine-like stride with no wasted motion. “All legs and arms” knew how to use them. After two quick laps, she slowed to a brisk walk. I hurried to keep up, breathing hard. She breathed without effort.
“So, training for the Masters season?” she asked in a businesslike tone.
… Masters? Jeezer, geezer, how old do you look …
“I’m just seeing what I can do.”
“Sorry I yelled at you,” she said. “Had some trouble with a homeless guy last fall. Tried to follow me home. My dad said the next time just call the cops. So … ”
“So that’s all right. I know. I get that a lot lately.”
“You ran for Valpo, huh?”
“Yeah, Chuck Wells, 880.”
“It’s the 800 now. When did everything get so metric?”
“Don’t know. Long before my time. That’s for sure. You ran in the … ”
“The Seventies? Dude, that was way before I was born.”
“Don’t rub it in. Say, what do you run?”
“Are ya kiddin’?”
I stopped. Thought for at least a Eugene, Ore., minute. And then I remembered.
“Price. Geri Price, right?”
“State champ in the 1,600.” Now I was embarrassed. “You went undefeated last year. You’re always in the paper.”
“Yeah, Wells, you’re not as dumb as you look,” she said. “And I suppose, technically, I should treat ya better. We do belong to the same club.”
Copyright © 2012 by Chuck H. Wells/Ray Hochgesang