Sunday, December 17, 2006

A run in Central Park

Yesterday morning I got up and did one of my favorite travel activities; I went for a run. We were in NYC for a birthday party (much more on that later), and we stayed at our friend Mary Ann's home on the Upper East Side, a block from Central Park.

I have only been to New York a couple of times, and had never been in Central Park. It was a perfect morning for a run, with clear, sunny skies and about 60 degrees. There was actually a race going through the park at the time, with several thousand participants, but I avoided that. They close the streets through the park on weekends, so there are lots of runners and bikers.

The reason I love to run when I travel is that I see a city in a very different way when I'm running, and the distraction of the sightseeing makes the running time just fly by. I have run in Honolulu, London, Calgary, Paris, Rome, Shanghai, the French Alps, and Nice.

Central Park is not as big as I pictured it to be. It's big, maybe five miles north-to-south and a mile east-to-west, but the impression I've always had from maps, movies and TV shows made me think it was larger. I think it's just that the Manhattan island is pretty small.

There were cyclists riding a circuit around the park, which has to get pretty boring, but I was still envious. As much as I enjoy running through a new city, cycling through one would be even better.

One of the best things about living in Boulder and running in Central Park is that I felt like I could run forever. I did about five miles and could have done several more, even though I haven't been running much. I quit because my knees would have made me pay for it later. And since I found out that the opening band for this party is Manhattan Transfer, something tells me that I'm going to have to do some dancing later.
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