The friendly dog11

This morning I ran three and a half miles and then I walked one mile. I started out down 150th Street and turned onto the Grand Central Parkway service road towards Parsons Boulevard. Right from there, a dog started running with me. He would run alongside me for a while, and then he would be inspired to go ahead 200 metres. Then again he would come back and run 30 or 40 metres with me.

The dog had a collar and he was very nice. He would come near me to smell my trousers, but he wouldn’t bark. I didn’t see any ferocious qualities in him, but a dog is a dog. God only knew what would happen next. When I was running down Parsons Boulevard to Union Turnpike, I saw a car going slowly and making a turn. At about my 1100-metre mark I stopped and stood looking at the car. The driver seemed to be very nice, so I said to him, “This dog is bothering me. Can you help me?”

He said, “Oh yes, I have been seeing that he has been following you. But what can I do?”

I said, “Can you please give me a ride for two blocks so that the dog won’t see me?”

He said, “Oh no, I will be stopping in half a block!”

Then the dog went 40 or 50 metres ahead, hoping I would follow. I ran back very fast in the other direction and turned again onto the Grand Central service road. For about 300 or 400 metres I ran on the service road. Then I made a left turn and ran to Union Turnpike again. The dog was not to be seen. I had fooled the dog.

At about my two-mile mark on Union Turnpike, I was on the sidewalk when a car started honking. I said to myself, “What is this? I am doing nothing wrong. Perhaps someone wants to ask me for directions.”

When I turned around, what did I see? The same car and the same man to whom I had spoken earlier. He said to me, “Mister, I feel very sorry that I didn’t give you a ride when you asked me. Please come with me.”

I said, “I thank you for your offer, but no thank you.”

He was a nice-looking man. His conscience was hurting him, so he wanted to compensate. After that I walked half a mile and then turned around and started running back.

So these kinds of experiences I get no matter what hour of the day I go running. Always there will be some obstruction. Most of the time my road crew follows me in the car; but when I go alone, I always have wonderful experiences!

RB 668. 2 December 1982