It’s that time of year when runners go into reflection mode, reminiscing about the year that’s coming to a close before declaring their often even more challenging, some might say crazy, goals for the new year ahead. It’ll come as no surprise that I’ve been feeling rather reflective myself of late.
Of course, I’ve been reflecting on the routes, the races, the scenery and the social running but I’ve also been thinking quite a lot about how my running friends have opened up my world and experiences to much more than just the trails and substantial amount of miles.
I’ve made a lot of lovely acquaintances and I’ve also built some pretty solid friendships through my running habit. One of the loveliest things to happen this year has been the music. Oh my goodness the music!
I don’t have a musical bone in my body, can’t sing a note and can’t play an instrument but I can appreciate music and I enjoy a wee dance. Thanks to my lovely running buddies, 2014 has been quite a musical bonanza and I’ve loved every minute!
First off there was the Burns night ceilidh in a driveway in Cambuslang, with musicians taking turns on various instruments in the garage whilst the revellers (like me) ceilidh danced on the pavoir – some of the best fun I’ve had! There were some excellent singers, who actually knew all the words to Auld Lang Syne – so I got away with miming!
Next came the infamous ‘Ding ding the Highland Fling’ tune which was reproduced in a number of versions and usually in costume, leading to a trend for shouting ‘Ding Ding’ at anyone spotted wearing any kind of Highland Fling merchandise.
Then there was the fabulously musical wedding, which was actually wonderful in every way (not just the music) – it was like a microcosm of how I’d like the world to be. Both brides and every other wedding guest are talented musicians – the music and dancing was out of this world. The meal was barely cleared away before my shoes were kicked off and my, reasonably groomed (let’s not kid ourselves here), hair had been pulled up to allow for more vigorous ceilidh dancing.
Later in the year I actually got to participate in a musical event, albeit as a driver – don’t be fooled I didn’t suddenly develop musical talent. This meant I was there for the screening of ‘Travelling Birds’ – a participant led musical film project by Hear My Music, which was followed by a set by a group of musicians from various Commonwealth countries (thank you Commonwealth Games!). This all took place in a hospice in Fife where I met some of the young people involved in the project and their families. It was a really special day for me, and it gave me an insight into the fantastic work done by Hear My Music.
And only this weekend I went to hear a friend that I met through running, play her cello and also sing. It was so beautiful, I doubt I have the words to do it justice. During one particular piece I closed my eyes and was transported to the islands of Scotland like one of the travelling birds. When it finished and I opened my eyes, the lashes were heavy with tears at the sheer beauty of it and the music’s ability to take me to wild places my feet haven’t carried me yet.
It’s amazing how many of my running friends are also talented musicians and I’m honoured to have heard so many of them play this year, but there are still a few I’ve yet to hear in concert so that’s a good goal for next year – after all there is more to life than just the running…