As I wrapped around the black asphalt track, my eyes smiled at the line of children sitting on a railroad tie in the playground. A giant lime green bow clung to the long blond locks of a 5 year old. Watching me as I jogged past her, she waved, giggling to her friends.
George Straight kicked me into gear. Lap three. One mile in. I run a 5k race in eight days. The first race in almost two years. I went to the local park instead of training on my parent's gravel driveway.
Dawnville. The place that I grew up. Ironically, the same place that I swore I would never return to. Though everyday since my return from Argentina, I find something new about Dalton. About Dawnville. About my home that teaches me.
It is baseball season. I pulled into the park. Ball field one: T-ball. Kids missing the ball off the T. Running in circles. Sitting in the outfield making dandy lion crowns. The beginning of making champions.
It is an interesting concept, little champions. The .33 track loops around the bigger champions. Two ball fields with parents circling the chain-linked fences. Screaming. Chanting. Cheering.
Lap six. Mile two. Where I got slow. When my shorts would not stop riding up my thighs. I tugged on my spandex bottoms as I passed her. Fifteen, 5'5. Hiding Ray Bans under a Camouflage cap, the drama was edged into her right, popped out hip. The difficulties of boys. Shoes. Clothes. Boys.
Lap eight. I felt like an outsider looking in-- as if no one could see me. The mom drinking her purple Gatorade did not notice her son picking on another boy. Grandparents searched for their reading glasses instead of their prescription shades as the sun faded to gray.
Lap 11. One lap to go until mile four. The tree's shadows hung over the fields. I no longer heard the music. All I saw was a lime green bow.
If it wasn't for those parents, their kids and their stained jerseys because of the dirt on local baseball fields; if it was not for the little girl and her lime green bow or teenage drama: small towns would never exist. Large cities either. The small joys of living would fade. Quickly. Like the sun during my jog.
Staying in one place is about living. The want of belonging. Though not just for belonging, but for living. For enjoying.
I arrived at the park for a run. To stretch out my legs. Sometimes you experience things that already lay embedded in your heart. The lime green bow reiterated my love for the details of a moment in time.