Two disturbing signs marred an otherwise beautiful morning run this week along the Mississippi River near Boom Lake.
Let’s dwell on the positive first.
The short stretch of East River Road sidewalk that runs from near North Star Apartments to College Drive provides an up-close look at the mighty Mississippi as well as any activities that might be going on at Don Adamson Field. We probably take it for granted but the athletic fields at Brainerd High School’s lower site are as beautiful as you’ll find in the state. That’s why I always hope for good weather for graduation night. There’s nothing that compares with watching that thin blue line of graduates making their way down the long stairway toward the football field. In 2004 a group of honking geese directly over the new graduates. You can’t simulate that sight in a crowded, humid gym. In 2006 a partly sunny night evolved into light showers and produced a fierce wind that toppled acoustic paneling that had been set up for the choir. However, a gorgeous double rainbow shined on that year’s graduating class, placating the moms and dads who got drenched during commencement speeches.
Runners can continue on East River Road and cross College Drive, enjoying the geese that are still hanging around Boom Lake on one side of the road and the Mississippi River on the other side. The brave of heart can proceed up Pumphouse Hill, which is steep enough to knock the silliness out of those runners whose pace was a little too fast.
So what could be disturbing about a late morning run at such a beautiful setting? Here are the experiences that mortified one middle-aged runner this week.
• Thin sheets of ice were trying to form on Boom Lake and the morning sun wasn’t powerful enough to quickly discourage that troublesome sign of things to come.
• The carrillon bells from the Crow Wing County Courthouse strayed from their normal patriotic fare and delved into Beatles music. It might not have been how Lennon and McCartney envisioned the tune but if one listened closely to the bells the distinct strain of “I Wanna be Your Man” were there to be appreciated — or at least heard — by all.
Well, we take the good with the bad, and if early season ice and unusual renditions of Beatles songs are as bad as it gets, we’ll probably be all right.