I love the way the changes in seasons usher in unspoken transitions, from the necessary layering up of clothes to the desire to be cosy and warm, helped by the comfort and warmth of a crackling fire. Today. we have watched the skies mix and mingle, equal parts blue and grey, and I think yet again, how I will never tire of watching the skies. This morning we awoke to the sound of rain pitter pattering on the roof of our little holiday cottage, relishing the old-familiar sound of constant, steady rain that waters & waterlogs this land, only for the sun to break through hours later.
Each morning, we have been running, just short distances, but running nonetheless. And while it doesn't feel like it's coming naturally, it feels good to move. My relationship with running has ebbed and flowed over the years and I feel very much in a season of my body telling me that it needs to move, to fill my lungs with fresh, crisp air, and stamp the proverbial cobwebs out of my muscles that feel a little heavy with a lack of regular exercise. This week I have tried to listen to these messages, which feels that bit easier with the increase in head space that a week off work provides. Without the mental and physical energy that work requires, there is less of a temptation to listen to that niggling inner voice that tells me to just enjoy a break rather than go running. As I ran this morning, I could feel the distinct drop in temperature, the contrast in sensations that is synonymous with Winter running, feeling like your lungs are cold even though you are breaking a sweat. Memories of running in Winter's past came flooding back, and I wondered at how I used to do this nearly every day. Running for miles, taking in the frost covered berries and leaves, watching my hot breath leave trails in the cold air, returning home with numb fingers and hot muscles. Some things are similar; the mental battle of running for a few miles before feeling like I could run forever, the feeling of the cold biting at my hands and my nose, and while these things remain the same, in their uncomfortable way, they are familiar and sometimes familiarity feels great.
This holiday has been one of great simplicity and consistency. Slow, quiet mornings, routine runs that include a chat with the horses in the field next to our cottage, reading time, enjoying quiet, solitude and just being in the company of each other, followed by afternoons at the local coffee shop, before returning home to make a roaring fire and simple comforting food to fill our bellies. Really, that has been the extent of our week, and I have loved every minute of rest, quiet and coffee.