Mother Goose Takes a Little Spill

Fall la la la la… Mother Goose wiped out this morning on her daily walk. It was a chilly and damp morning, but with so much golden sunshine in the air, Mother Goose felt the call of the wild and headed out. Now some of the readers of Mother Goose know that she is in real-live training for her first 5K race. I’ve registered and paid big bucks to participate in the Race that’s Good for Life which will happen right here in friendly Oak Park on April 1st, 2012. Some of the readers of Mother Goose may think that this is an April Fool’s joke just waiting to happen, but I assure you this is all true and as real as the huge bruise on my left arm.

A goose running a 5K? YES!

Back to my little story…

I dressed for my role as an athlete with my new Adidas running shoes, my baggy sweat pants and T-shirt sans a bra, one hoodie, one red scarf, one sporty over-jacket, one headband and two mitten/gloves (the kind where you can stick your fingers out if they get overheated). And out the door I went and down the block. And then back inside to fetch my phone and camera. And then out the door and down the block again. I noticed immediately that there were patches of black ice on the sidewalk. But practical goose that I am, I stuck to the sunny side of the street where most of the ice had melted into shallow little puddles.

A typical 5K race is actually 3.3 miles long — which is good to know if you’re not from Canada or the United Kingdom or anywhere else in the world where the metric system is normal. Here in the U.S.A., very few things are labeled with “k” as in kilometers so we all have to do that complicated conversion formula that we all memorized in school. Or else google it. Which I did.

I have learned over the past few weeks of training that I can walk 2.5 miles in about 50 minutes. So I started out this morning with the goal of walking 60 minutes which must be about 3.3 miles or a 5K or something close. I chose my route carefully. I chose my steps even more carefully as there was still patchy black ice here and there on the sidewalk where the shadows were falling. Little did I know that before the hour was up, the shadows would fall on me.

Because I am in training, I walk very quickly and very determinedly and very happily. I look to the left and right only when I cross the street — I am focused as only a trained goose can be. I smile, but it is a very private smile. I say “hi” to people whom I meet on the route, but I do not stop to visit with them. I do say “hi pup” to their dogs if they are walking one. Mostly my walks are very serious business.

Once in awhile, Mother Goose breaks into a full out run. And yes, I did run this morning — only for a block or so — and then I’d slow back down. This morning, as I was doing a major sprint down the sidewalk, I met a man walking two dogs. “How about that ice this morning,” I called out merrily. He vaguely agreed as I kept running down the sidewalk.

A nice place to rest.

I met my halfway spot on my route and sat down on a park bench to rest for 60 seconds, and then up and away I marched off. I found that I was walking slightly slower so I took out my camera to take some pictures of the pretty homes along my route — just to pass the time and catch my breath. All the while, of course, very mindful of black ice all around me on the sidewalks.

One of Frank Lloyd Wright's beautiful designs

Oak Park is a charming old village. Many of the homes have historic register plaques and published histories. Many of the original charming slate sidewalks remain intact amongst the modern concrete sections. Mother Goose was pondering all of this as she strolled by a certain mansion. Let’s listen to her thoughts:

“What a lovely morning! The sky is sure blue today. Oh look at this pretty home with the black wrought iron fence and gated driveway. I wonder what the password is for their locked gate. Oh I see they have a slate sidewalk. I wonder if some residents get sued for not sprinkling salt on their sidewalks when it’s icy outside. What if somebody fell down and got hurt? I should be so careful so I don’ —–”

And down went Mother Goose! In slow motion, of course! Let’s listen in again to the thoughts of Mother Goose:

“Oh no, will I hit my head? Will I break any bones? Will I be able to get back up to finish my walk? I hope nobody is watching me. I wonder if my sister is working today?”

And there I lay. I hit the ground with my left elbow and the momentum of the fall rolled me onto my back. I quickly did a body inventory as I looked up into the blue blue sky, and decided that I could try to move. So that meant that I wasn’t knocked out anyway. Gingerly, Mother Goose got to her hands and knees and then with a tender upward lift, got to her feet. “Ow,” I said quietly to myself. “Ow….ow.” And holding my left elbow in my right hand, I took a step forward, and then another. A car drove by but they didn’t stop to ask about me so they probably didn’t see my tumble. They didn’t ask for my autograph either — they didn’t honk, but I was honking to myself all the rest of the way home.

And so, Mother Goose learned a little lesson this morning. Training for a 5K race is a really good thing, but I need to practice my falling technique at home so that I look good when I go down in public. Honk honk accidents happen! Fall la la la la la…


5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Dianna
    Dec 29, 2011 @ 15:19:42

    Oh, Mother Goose, I’m so glad you weren’t hurt. (Well, except for the pride….) And why is it that falling always happens in slow-motion??
    You be careful with all that training, Mother Goose!


    • Natalie
      Dec 30, 2011 @ 16:01:54

      I hope you haven’t fallen recently, Dianna. The slow motion thing is very very odd — almost as though my thoughts speeded up as I went down.


  2. yearstricken
    Dec 29, 2011 @ 17:06:13

    I admire you, and I like this post. In the winter, as much as I like the fresh air, I walk on a treadmill (just in case).


  3. ElizOF
    Jan 16, 2012 @ 04:27:51

    Hope you’re doing better! Happens to the best of us. 😉


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