Join 'In Clean Air'

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Zen of the Road Side Sobakawa

I had just crossed the busyness of Hwy 421 and its evening flow of traffic being herded from light to light.

My day's 10 miles behind me and my car just out of sight and around the short bend in the road ahead. I could sense the calmness of another chilly spring sunset as the sky drew pale oranges through its wispy vapors.

With an off day preceding the run I was feeling the pep in my step enough to close this run with a flurry of playful speed. So, like days past when I came upon those familiar crumbles in the edge of the asphalt I just gave a few skips and leaps to negotiate the area. Zipping down the incline I felt smooth and light.

From the corner of my eye I spotted a beaten down old sports car which grabbed my attention for a split moment as it drove in the opposite lane and came to a stop at the intersection.

I then felt my right foot cease its forward movement, impeded by a chunk of fatigued, rogue roadway.

My left foot trailed behind still in its plant position. My torso was rotating forward, laying out into the space before me. Time slowed... My body left the ground and was moving through air, suspended and weightless.

In temporary flight, I scouted for the more dangerous areas to land and to avoid. My trail-mind kicked in first searching for trees, rocks, roots... Then my road mind spoke up with its warning...

"This, is gonna hurt..."

My survival brain kicked in, "ROLL! (idiot)..."

I tucked my left side into a sideways log roll hoping to minimize the skin damage and avoid anything big being broken. As I touched down, time sped forward and instantly caught up with the fall.

In this rush of gravelly sounds I lay still with the passing, distant 'whoosh' of commuting vehicles. I heard the idling of that beaten old sports car at the stop sign waiting to merge into that stream.

I was still laying motionless and groaning in discomfort. Apprehensively delaying the inevitable body parts check list to come once I moved.

The gravel was comfortable now that I lay there motionless. The chilly air had cooled the small pebbles and in this moment nothing ached or stung or bled, not yet. Laying there I felt the gravel acquiesce to my still weight and shape... finding the zen of the road side sobakawa.


  1. Ouch. I had to look up "sobakawa"

  2. Dammit! What kind of car was it?! (car nut here...)

    Oh, sorry about your fall. Hope you are OK. :-)

  3. Niiice...You are one of the few people who truly live in the moment, Sean.

  4. ..."off in the distance, I heard a muted trumpet with it's tinny whine say wah wah waaaaah."

    There, I finished it for you. You're welcome.


Want to Clean the Air? Post a Comment!