Running in the rain

They’re running in the rain

They’re running in the rain

What a glorious feeling

They’re happy again …

On Sunday, Sept. 1, the world ran past my gate. There must have been hundreds of beautiful people, young, old, male, female, tall, short, every color known to man. Or woman.

 A bevy of darling young beauties, like a bouquet of spring flowers, gossiped their way by. They were right at home, having fun, waving, smiling, sharing their joy.

 Waha Road was closed to traffic, but a cheering, cheerful gaggle of helpers, in yellow T-shirts, showed up early down and across the street to greet the runners, hand them water, and point out the portable potty that sat quite comfortably and kind of picturesquely on the side lines.

Guys on bikes whispered by. I waved, they waved. The stage was set.

When the first runner appeared, out of sight around a corner, you could hear yellow shirts cheering and clapping. Before it was over my hands were hot and red from clapping.

 I’d fed and watered the zoo, Ari, Boots, two cats and Duke, the fly away macaw, fast. I’d hauled a green lawn chair and an ice bucket with a bottle of Henry Weinhard’s beer inside cooling its heels, waiting for the right guy to run by and sneak a swig. On the street in front of the red gates, I sat sipping green tea and munching nori. I felt it suited the moment.

 A low happy gray cloud cover dripped once in awhile cooling us off. It rained misty pineapple juice, as we used to say, on my side of the street, anyway. An occasional heavy sprinkle watered us down. I threw a towel over my head and mopped at my sweats. When the sun popped through it dried me off pretty fast but I had a towel to wipe my seat and the seat of the chair. When Boots finished her breakfast I brought her outside to watch with me.

I think the event confused her. She watched them, as they passed, with a cautious eye.

 In the pasture, at the bottom of the hairpin turn, white face cattle-and one little black angus-haughtily ignored the going’s on. A white cattle egret skipped and hopped among them and once, as I watched, hitched a ride. Six lofty branches peeped pink over the top of a less lofty tree while another pink shower stood guard by the fence.

 The first runner, a simply gorgeous guy with a stride to die for, was deep “in the zone” as he scissored by. I’d never seen anyone who moved like that.

 Up and down the road they ran. The happy people. I loved the green shoes. I loved the guys in the rooster hats. I loved then all.

 When Bill Buley ran down, he stopped for a quick swig, ran on.

If people like that would run every day on every street in the world, peace would reign. Long live the runners.

• Bettyjo Dux is a Kalaheo resident and author of “The Scam: A madcap romp through North Shore Kauai.”


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