Well I have another for you. Except I don’t have a photo.
This morning I woke up butt-early (I lost all my morning run willpower this summer) to get in a run. I’d planned on heading out to a park where I could pretend to do some speedwork. It’s a location & route I’m familiar with, but don’t run too often. I get over there maybe once every two weeks or so. I haven’t run over there in the early morning before.
Well, this morning after getting ready, I headed outside to get started. Right outside my door I was walking a little close to the cars, and jumped when I realized there was a guy sitting in the driver’s seat of the car I was passing (i.e. less than a foot from).
I jumped a bit, but headed on. It wasn’t a familiar car or guy (or even the social profile of the person in the car… I hope that’s not rude). So I kept my eye to make sure he wouldn’t follow.
Then, as I approached the light a half block from my home, I noticed a woman in a short (short) skirt come up and approach a driver parked in his car at that intersection. She bent over to talk with him, and I realized what was happening. She went around and got into the passenger’s seat, and then they drove off as the light turned. I watched them drive into the next alley & park behind my dry cleaners.
Between that and then recalling Morning Runner’s run in with a ghost this week, I got a bit scared about running in a park that I hadn’t run in early morning before. Suddenly the perks of the park (loop for speedwork, port-a-potty if necessary) didn’t seem so much like benefits as risks for danger & stalkers.
I continued on, but switched to doing my normal route that I’m very familiar with in early morning running. It goes on major streets. While some people don’t think that those streets are the safest, I think they’re safer than shee-shee Lincoln Park because the roads are larger, better lit, and there’s always people & cars around – even at 5:20am. I’m running on the same sidewalks as people heading to the train for work – and pass by 3 train stops.
I made it home safely after 4 miles and without any further incident, but this has definitely made me consider whether I should finally implement some additional safety precautions – such as running with my phone (didn’t want to get mugged) or even a personal Mace thing like Amanda TTF has recommended.
Now I just have to find another time to plan my speedwork…