Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Running in Africa...what a trip!

Well, Africa certainly threw some surprises at me as far as my training there. I met a girl who is a cross country runner at Alma College, and she was running twice a day, so she convinced me to keep her company on this training style I haven't used since 1972. Of course, back then, I ran a 2:30 marathon, too, so maybe this will be good for me.

Of course, I am staying in the bush outside of Accra, Ghana, and it is humid, and the infrastructure of the area is very challenging. There are no paved roads, and the only roads are dirt, with huge ruts and bumps, so running here is like running trails, or cross country! Then, there is a little matter of the large goats that stand in the road looking at us, not to mention the chickens and the roosters that dart out from the side of the road at us as we trudge along in the 95% humidity, which saps me from the beginning.

But, it has been a challenge, one that I rose to the occasion on...and there are the locals who yell "obruni," (white people) as we run by. Sometimes children will come along and jump into our arms as we approach them. The children are such a joy, and they run along beside us for awhile, laughing at us, and giving us big hugs.

The orphans are not into running as I hoped they would be...they are more into soccer (go figure), but I donated the shoes and the shirts, and they were grateful, not to the running part, but to having shoes! To having clothes! Now, all they need is food.


1 comment:

KcandyP said...


It sounds like a tough but a rewarding experience. I'm sorry they didn't get into running but then even my own daughter (who is very good at soccer) sees no value in running unless there is a ball by her feet.

I hope your training there will help you here, at least it's not as humid here at home. Hope to see you out running soon!