My family be-bopped around Pennsylvania over the holiday weekend to squeeze in both my mom’s and dad’s sides. We spent the actual 4th of July at a lake house near Erie, and then spent the next night in a cabin near Pittsburgh, both filled with family, card games, and food. And more food.
I’ll recap more of the weekend later this week, but for now I’ll share a story about Sunday morning’s run, an unexpected hour and a half adventure. Also known as The Time I Got Lost on an Out-and-Back Run, featuring a nice stranger and his iPhone. Here we go!
Some people are equipped with knowledge of street names, others with a sense of cardinal directions, many with visual memory, and a *special* few with nothing…except friends and GPS. I fall into the category of spin-me-around-on-my-driveway-and-I’ll-get-lost.
On Sunday morning in Pittsburgh, I joined my dad, uncle, and cousin Ally for a DFD run–double father daughter run–on the wooded roads from our cabin. My knee has been hurting, but I’m cleared to run if I stop before the pain starts (about 4 miles right now), so my plan was to go out with the group and turn around early. The run started out beautifully: borderline chilly weather(!!), pretty sights, and good company. I turned around by myself after 18 minutes, and that’s when things went downhill (except literally up a giant hill).
The run back should have been easy because we only made one turn, but somehow I missed that turn and doubled back and forth and back and forth until everything looked familiar yet nothing looked familiar. All of the street names and trees and houses blurred together and I couldn’t remember if I passed them pre- or post- getting lost. All I knew was that I was lost, and without even knowing which direction to run, I stopped at the side of the road and thought through my options. Wait until someone notices I’m gone. What if no one notices until they pack the car?! Walk to a store and use the phone. I don’t see any stores. Flag down the first friendly person I see.
After an eternity of pacing back and forth, a biker came pedaling up the road and I waved him over. He was happy to let me use his phone, but I couldn’t get ahold of anyone (phone service was spotty), I didn’t recognize any street names on his map app, and he didn’t recognize the (wrong) street name I told him I was looking for, nor did he recognize my vague description of a gravel road..
…we brainstormed ideas, googled anything relevant, and called his wife for suggestions. I mixed up Bradsberry and Barberry and got us even more mixed up, and his wife was about to drive me up and down the wrong one until I finally got ahold of my sister through the spotty reception. I waited at their barn until my family came to save me.
I was lost for almost 2 hours! I owe an enormous thank you to the nice family for spending their Sunday morning helping me, and to my family for picking me up–thanks mom, dad, Laura, and Aunt Bev! Though being lost is scary and not funny, it is kind of funny now (knowing that everything turned out fine), and I doubt I will live it down until I can figure out which way is North.
- I need a running partner, a trail of bread crumbs, or a flare gun at all times.
- I should carry my phone.
- I can run 6 miles pain-free!
More 4th of July recaps coming later this week!
Do you carry your phone when you run? How?
Have you ever gotten lost on a run?