This morning, while cruising through the park in my little blue pick-up truck and thinking about the classes I had to teach today and how many entries we would get for the 4th Annual Photography Club Photo Contest, I chanced upon a race. A thirteen mile race, as it turned out, with runners of almost every description. There were tall runners, short runners, fat runners, skinny runners, old runners and young runners. Most of them were actually running, and had signs on their chests with numbers and the inscription “Frostbite Series”.
It was the Saint Louis Track Club’s 4th run in their 2018-2019 Frostbite Series, and while the runners were not in actual danger from the cold, I soon began to feel that I was. I snapped a few photos, talked to the men handing our water and Gatorade to the runners in the part of the run between the Amateur Athletic Association golf course and Avation Field and went back to my car to warm my hands and replace the dead battery in one of my cameras. Ambling down the hill by the Jewel Box toward the Muny gave me a good view through the woods on the west side of the road, and I made a few mental notes about future photo opportunities. I rolled past the colonnade of the Muny over the Old Stable Bridge and headed toward the northeast corner of the park. Before I got past the Hidden Creek Savanna, I crossed paths with the runners again. I watched as they huffed and puffed their way past me (they didn’t blow my house down, though) and tried different angles for my photos.
From there I went past the Visitors Center intending to pass out of the park via DeBaliviere Boulevard, but had my attention arrested by a group of girls with signs, shouting and jumping up and down, cheering for a friend who was in the run. I quickly pulled over and hopped out to get a shot, after all, who could resist such enthusiasm?
So, Lily Bloom, this one’s for you.