Her feet plod on, not particularly enjoying the enforced exercise but dutifully following the brain’s instructions. She was early today and the usually coterie of old men and women walking their Golden Retrievers and tube like dachshunds were yet to arrive. She wished she had left at the usual time – she missed them and their smiling, wrinkly faces. They always had something to say to her ‘Lovely day isn’t it?’ ‘My, aren’t you working up a sweat today’; the old man who always pointed at his collie and said ‘Why don’t you take her for a walk? She won’t come though!’ and then burst in to laughter waiting expectantly for her chuckle. There was even the stooped over old woman who always arrived with a full face of makeup and made her way around the park at an excruciatingly slow pace. The woman had stopped her once and asked what she was listening to. She had removed her headphones wiped them down and then slid them over the soft, whispy down covering the woman’s head. She watched the bemused expression on the wizened face as M.S’s cajoling voice filtered through. She had laughed when the old woman shook her head and said ‘I don’t understand.’
None of them were there though. In their place joggers in aggressively shiny track suits rumbled along the track, inhaling and exhaling ‘shoop whoosh shoop whoosh’ to the rhythm of their feet. They made her feel fat and slovenly. It was as though they were thinking to themselves ‘Lazy cow. Why isn’t she running?’ She had offered hesitant smiles at some of them, but they had been ignored. She stepped aside as a group of young girls ran by, terrycloth shorts moulded over their pert derrieres, their legs long and smooth. She thought shamefully of the Amazonian growth that covered her legs. Some young boys were playing basketball, their pale, hairless bodies supple flashes of light across the court. She spotted a jogger in the distance running towards her. Without thinking she launched in to a brisk jog.
‘I’ll run right by you’ she muttered herself ‘like a graceful gazelle’ and composed her features in to what she hoped was haughty disdain.
He watched the woman break out in to a manic run, face contorted in agony. He slowed down a little, worried she was one of those unstable types who attacked people without warning. She was all but a few feet away when she suddenly turned left and went scrambling towards the nearest exit. Shame, he thought to himself, picking up his pace, she had been rather attractive.