‘Twas my last parkrun before Christmas
And all through the park was water and puddles and sleet in near dark
With matching Marcothon buffs and T-shirts we were looking just great
As we left the warmth of the car for my Charlie play date
The human is volunteering next week as part of a club roster takeover at Drumchapel and apparently I’m not allowed to join him (though that sounds like a made up tail). That means this was probably my last parkrun before Christmas though hopefully he will take me out for another dog jog somewhere before then.
We did the wonderful Queen’s Park a few weeks back where I got to meet Charlie and I was keen for a return play date so there was only ever one parkrun in the reckoning today. That was perhaps the only vote that everyone could get on board with this week.
The forecast wasn’t great to start with and around 7:30am as the rain was battering against the windows mum said it maybe didn’t sound like a parkrun day. Clearly she’s not a runner. Didn’t she know I had a play date? It’s almost Christmas we said. We won’t even notice the rain dear.
We managed to convince her (and probably ourselves) that it was clearing up and it would be glorious in the Southside as we hit the road. We put the festive tunes on. Bark the herald angels sing, some tunes from the muttcracker suite then he started singing… Dashund through the snow…stop! Enough already!
How wrong we were about the improving weather though. The minute we parked up the skies got darker, the rain got even heavier and then the rain turned to sleet. We decided that we could do without a warm-up this week so stayed in the car a little bit longer. For the first time ever I ran today with my waterproof on. Sometimes being dry is more important than being a four-legged fashionista.
Just after 9 we decided to brave the elements and headed across to the relative shelter of the bandstand. There we found Charlie and we had a good play chasing sticks, sniffing babies, talking to cyclists, running up and down the steps and playing in the puddles. It was great fun and lovely to see him again. We saw him a few times more on our run. On one lap he was marshalling and the next time we passed Laura he had decided to bail and tag along with one of her friends for part of the run. I like his style. A free spirit. We also met two lovely parkrun tourists from Oxford who were both running in their Christmas jumper. The same jumper! Amazing. See below for borrowed pic.
As usual the core team and volunteers were in great form, making light of the elements and cheering us all round. I even got a name check in Sarah-Jane’s briefing at the start and a few folk remembered me from my last visit. Notorious or famous? You decide.
Following a few weeks of speedier parkruns this was anything but. After running through the new water feature at the start (see pic below) our six legs were like blocks of ice and we started making our excuses even before the first hill. Today was about running for “fun” not for a time. No pressure. Phew. Jim is almost half way through his Marcothon run every day in December challenge so I think he was happier than me with that approach.
Even in atrocious weather, Queen’s Park is a still beautiful park and we really enjoyed our run especially on a few hills with rivers of water cascading towards us. It’s a great feeling getting past the flagpole and hitting the downhill though it’s always over far too soon. The view from the top is great but today wasn’t a day for hanging around. The volunteers made it so much easier today though. The water feature didn’t get any easier on the next two laps. Just as my paws had dried and thawed out each time it was straight back into the ice bath. We must be barking mad.
We came home in 29 minutes dead. But just about still alive. Almost 5 minutes slower than last week but happy with that. I think I was second dog today behind a very speedy collie. We also met (and beat) another cockapoo called Buttons, a very cute dog with a really cool name.
After a bit of a drama at the end where dad thought he had lost his phone…he hadn’t but only realised this after dragging Laura, Charlie and I back through the wind, cold and rain to re-trace his steps (I apologise profusely on his behalf) we went for quick coffee.
This was the first time I’ve been allowed into an indoor parkrun cafe so I had to be on my best behaviour. The Baptist Church church hall was excellent. Buttons and Charlie were there too so we said hello again. Dad had a nice coffee and a few biscuits and I got a few crumbs (no pun intended…or was it?). They also had a nice grotto but there was no sign of Santa Paws.
We love Queen’s Park and will be back soon. One of Glasgow’s tougher ones but certainly one of the friendliest and prettiest. And a dog-friendly indoor cafe is a big pawsitive.
I’m now back home, fed, watered and defrosted. Hopefully I’ll have fully dried out by my next parkrun.
Happy Christmas everyone in case I don’t blog again before then. I hope your Christmas is a cracker.
Crumble out x