I woke up tense. Both Dan and I lay awake in bed last night until almost 2 am, failing miserably to fall asleep. I alternated between trying to not roll down the body-width wide concavity on my side of the mattress (our IKEA mattress was probably not made to last two years) and just giving up and lying sideways, staring out the window, below the curtain. Without my glasses on, the street lights outside flare into glowing tiny balls of light. I couldn’t find the constellation of red, white and orange lights across low building tops probably somewhere down Yonge St that a month ago, on a similar night of insomnia, I thought looked like a psychotic duck, with a flashing red eye. The diamond of the building roof shaped like the duck’s body, a broad orange light, its beak.
The view outside our balcony, from the 40th floor of our building, looks almost like the view we experienced of the Grand Canyon: white haze. I think it’s a cloud or some equivalent mist. I’ve been cycling to work and my backpack and jacket are filthy with splotches of mud, the fine dust that covers everything in Toronto forms a chunky slip.
I knew the best remedy for the situation, considering I’ve got one last evening shift on call tonight, was to take the elevator downstairs pop my earbud headphones in my too-small-for-earbud-headphone-ears and try to run 3 km, or 20 min, whichever came first. In Perth I’d gauge my fitness level, or how run down I was, with hills. Could I cycle up Malcom St (without getting hit by a Transperth bus), or that giant hill between Maylands and Osborne Park, or the hill in Kings Park, just North of Roberts Road, without stopping? In second gear? At a sprint? On Good Friday I ran 3.0 km in 17 min 28 sec, a personal best. I felt full of energy. I ran to phrases in the music, like they do in Spin classes. Then, pretending it was like in most computer games where you gain a period of invincibility or bonus points, I kept running, beyond where I thought I’d need to stop or slow down. I had more reserve than I thought. Today I didn’t. I started to wheeze. I’d left my Ventolin upstairs and soon I was coughing up mucus. I had to walk in between sprints. 3.04 km took my 19 min 4 sec today. But I did it. My calves ached (maybe I should stretch occasionally). I sweated. But I did it.
Toronto Police are awesome (I’d love to see this level of community engagement from Western Australian law enforcement):