In a couple of months, I will be back in the US, running on a trail deliberately made for runners and cyclists. No one will blink an eye when I run down the trail in a neon green top and hat.
One thing I enjoy about running in a new place is the chance to explore parts of a city or countryside that I might not otherwise see. Sometimes I ended up in strange places, or running on precarious edges of roads. Often, though, I find roads and parks that I might not notice.
Here, I can run in the hills outside the immediate city, where I can see herds of sheep, a goat herd and its herder, cows, a horse, and today, a rooster that is the size of a small dog. Sometimes I see a group of four Roma women who sleep rough. Or the occasional runner or bike biker. Usually, though, I see no one as I make my way up the hill. Heading back, into the city, I start to meet people. Sometimes people heading home with shopping, or more often school children on the way to school or home. And always, cars. The narrow one lane means everyone takes a turn. Well, cars always trump people here.
When I run on the track, I see people waiting at the Mosque or people out for exercise. It is a different sort of run. As I circle the track, I can look up the houses crammed on the hillside. Running back on the road, I encounter regular people, who stare.
I will never get used to the staring.
The thing I will miss is the tremendous view of the city , which today is shrouded in fog. So much fog that you cannot even see the cross on the hill. It is another world.