At a certain stage in life, running combines two opposites. There’s clocking miles going forward while simultaneously moving backwards through time.
Explaining this theory of relativity to an ageing Jack Russell is quite a task. Sometimes the only way to grab his attention in any conversation is by frequently including the word “run”.
I patiently explain that we’re going on a run down memory lane. Then with little ceremony and less finesse he hauls me through the Botanic Gardens on a four-mile loop which takes in my old residence in West Princes Street, adjacent to St George’s Road.
Great Western Road has been transformed over the past half-century. The sky-line is much the same but the food outlets are as numerous and varied as they were once non-existent.
Over the years for one reason or another I’ve stayed in every small hotel along the stretch of Buckingham Terrace but Buddy seems unimpressed by tales of births, hospital visits and general lording it as we trot on towards Kelvinbridge.
Close to the M8 flyover I recall the launderette that was always good for a bit of gossip, thinking it might be of interest to him. It isn’t.
However we’ve now reached West Princes street, with its history forever shrouded in mystery and intrigue.
As we skip onto Woodlands road he remains deaf-eared to my description of the hostelry that is today a haven from the thumping noise of most pubs, the Doublet.
An offer of pausing for a dram is ignored as he scuttles along Park road, eager to see if there are any foxes around the next corner.
‘GET A LIFE’
One Saturday evening near Byres Road a reveller advised that we “get a life”. Buddy innocently thought this a friendly greeting and ran towards the voice for some attention.
He was duly rewarded with a pat on the head. This shared experience and fun is the up-side of running with a dog.
The daily routine is going well; a content Buddy, padding along with rippling muscles.
* Keep following Ronnie McGowan and his pet Jack Russell Buddy as they embark on a challenge of running every day for a year