Raych running diaries: The runners traffic code

Raych’s Running Diaries: My five Shadows
February 11, 2019
Raych’s running diaries: The kili-Sun chronicles
April 10, 2019

Its training day. Am up the road for my usual morning or evening run. The number of road users building up. Runners and motorists. Sometimes there is a pedestrian walkway which i shall happily use, just that the walking nation can sometimes be hazardous. You’ll meet this chap who carries his umbrella swinging it back and
forth. Watch that one he could gauge out your large intestines. Mister, please get a pocket size umbrella. These long umbrellas are carried in car boots.

Then there is the figureful middle aged lady carrying a large Kyondo (woven african basket) that she keeps shifting from one shoulder to the other. It must be heavy. You collide with her (her bag) and the pain in your ribs. Why would she be carrying a chopping board around in a Kyondo. I mean whatever it is must be wooden and cornered. It hurts. Mama, please put a hazard sign. Ever seen the long trailers with an abnormal load sign? They put red strips of cloth or tape at the back of the trailer to warn other motorists to steer clear of its trail path. Mama your Kyondo needs a red ribbon.

Then there is the chap who decides to sneeze then execute a farmers blow just as you are about to pass. Yak. You missed it landing on your Nike orange t-shirt. Brother, this is a no no. Farmer’s blow are exactly that. Wait until you get to your potato farm in North Kinangop. That is a real health hazard. You could get arrested by the public health officer. I see you approach me steering calmly. Am conscious as we approach each other. Me on the shoulder of the road. You on your lane. Your speed 80kph. You slow down as you pass me. Thank you. Further on, i see you drive fast. You look like you’re chase car. Please, slow down and pick your speed after you pass me. It will not cost you much. While at it you could wave and steer me on. See when you speed next to me, you could easily get off the road, i mean fast cars loose control right? That’s disastrous. A middle aged man is killed at early dawn while jogging along Mbagathi road by a speeding car not a slow car.

Watch. Why do you have to get me off the road. Its a private estate road. Come on, some love here. There is no oncoming car you can move a little to the centre line instead of me and you squeezing on the same lane. Relax the traffic cops are engaged at the Bunyala roundabout its busy there. Besides, these lanes are wide enough stop pushing me off the road. There is no pedestrian walkway please lets share the lane.

My goodness, you scared me. Why did you have to hoot so loudly. Okay i get it, you know me, you are excited to see me run. We met at the church group and we discovered i run near your office. Its your way to cheer me. You scared me. See i have been inviting you for our club runs but your “schedule” is tight. Really? If you came you would understand why you dont hoot behind a runner who is doing speed work. Maybe if they’re hill training they may need a lift to the top. Somethings can stop the heart. Hooting behind a runner when they are on their high feet. Get to work and whatsapp me.

“Is that you i saw on Ole Dume running so fast…wow( what she intends to ask: Is that you i saw on Ole dume running with a “wet bum”. Come on we don’t wee at ourselves as we run ( bathroom emergencies allowed), we just sweat at all the hottest places, comes with the game. we clean
up real good after and rock Old navy tank tops, Ralph Lauren pencil skirts, and some hot louisvuitton heels, doesnt matter where we buy them, woolies or the sunshine boutique at a bargain price..they got them all).

Dont stop ahead of me to give me a hug. First, am sweaty, second am on a mission here its not time to catch up on who didnt send you chama cash last month and how big your multi-level marketing team has grown. Am running cant you see, if you stop then better have some water to offer. Even then i sip and run before you remember why you stopped. I cant talk i wont talk. My running garmin watch is at work, you cant be the reason they call me slow snail because my speeds are walking speeds. Please keep driving. No stopping. Whatapps me later. Dont roll down your windows and throw stuff out of the window. Its bad manners, unless it stinks and you cant keep it in your car. Allowed. You changed diapers from cute baby. Wrap it up. Throw later. Dare you throw your rubbish on me. I’ll throw it right back on your laps. Please dont. Flying objects are dangerous for runners.

We love running. We worry about our safety. Today we make a promise. As you drive, smile, life is beautiful. Dont be jealous, dont be angry with me, am just running for me…okay for us…me to keep fit…you to…eh..motivate you?. You look like you need a run to make you smile. We are happy people. We run. Help keep roads safe for runners. We love you. We know you are there when it matters. To take us home after the finish line. When we get injured. Strugglers rescue. You support us.

Today we runners make promises to you. For our and your safety.

  1. We promise we’ll stick to the shoulder of the road better still we’ll run on the pedestrian walkways.
  2. We promise we’ll run in the opposite direction of cars, so you see us well and we see you. You keep left. We keep right.
  3. We promise to wear reflective clothing. Nothing too harmful to your eyes. You’ll love the colours. We love luminous colours. Yellow and Orange a common favourite.
  4. We promise, If traffic gets heavy, or the road narrows, we’ll move onto the walkways or shoulder of the road.
  5. We promise we’ll avoid using iPods or wearing headphones to be able to hear approaching vehicles.
  6. We promise to have manners. We shall not run on your lane and expect you to veer out of the road.
  7. We promise not to let our running energy be deployed to launch our anger muscles when you behave badly. There are no anger marathons. Only running marathons. We’ll stick to our business even when it’s your lack of manners.
  8. We promise, when we run as a group, we shall not hurlde together like sheep, we shall run on a single file on the shoulder of the road.
  9. We promise to stay alert as we run. No day dreaming as we run. Sometimes we are lost in timbuktu reminiscing and building our dream house. A small nice house on a hill similar to the “teletubbies” cartoon house where every morning we watch the sun rise .
  10. We promise to wave in the air, smile hard (endorphins loading) hopefully you don’t feel guilty for sitting in the car munching donuts and cup cakes. It’s okay to indulge just moderately so long as you got a plan to burn loaded calories.

I know sometimes you cant avoid staring at the firm derriers as they run past you….This shall get me stoned! Worse excommunicated. Oh goodness expelled too is an option. I see a stone lifted and another….be the first to cast a stone.These gems are kilos, anyhow we lift and swag them. Hard work. Helps to keep centre of gravity right. But please focus ahead. They taught you at driving school to keep eyes front. Right? Mbele iko sawa? Please don’t say it…”Nyuma iko sawa..” okay say it but drive on.

Our plea
Please dont hit us. Don’t kill us. Each of us just like you is either a husband, a wife, a brother, a sister, a mamie, a dadie, a pastor, a lawyer, a student, an engineer, a teacher, a fashion designer, a urologist. We are all those people who are special to someone, to you, who mean something to someone even to the government. We are tax payers.
Keep the roads safe.
Keep us alive.
We run. We love the roads.

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