Above from Below

A midnight run up Mt. Tzouhalem. 500 m of climbing. Left the car at 11:30PM. Why? Why not just go to bed? It feels crazy. I can only do it because I have no kids and my girlfriend is asleep after a long 24 hours of midwifing. I do it thinking of her. I do it thinking of future runs and self worth and the simple pleasure of moving and for the long day spent in an office chair. Thinking of cougars lurking in the forest around me. The trail pierces upward through fog, into and out of forest and meadow and rocky ridgelines. My own bubble of head-light and glimpses of town lights growing more distant below. Until I reach the top. And look down on the Cowichan Valley and see the thin fog lit from below by mercury vapour and sodium arc and LED. An impressionistic patchwork of beautiful color below and sharp pin pricks of stars above and frost glinting in the grass around me. I feel triumphant and like I’ve seen something and that’s enough to send me back down the hill to my car happy and almost confident that I wont get cougared or stranded up there somehow.