The sky was shockingly bright, so much so that the color had leached out of it and it was nearly white. And the seashore was acres upon acres of dried sea grass, wild oats, all which have dried into a rusty orange brown color. Soft puffy cotton still clung to the dried black stalks of the wild cotton plants scattered within the expanse. The brackish tidal pools were indigo, today, reflecting the cloudless sky with false intensity.
The black and white monolith watched over me with her solitary eye as I ran down the empty roads normally inhabited with tourists and park rangers. She was my posse today, and she was always with me, just behind me or just ahead, as I ran through the park. The lone witness.
The wind was beating me and the grasses in a primitive pulsing and humming melody that complimented the back beat of the ocean beside me. Piercing gusts shrieked as it cut through the bone colored tree trunks that thrust out of the brush like giant hands. Now and then, as I ran, the roar of wind in my ears was interrupted with the crack of a nearby rifle. Because of the perceived closeness of the hunters, I detoured and fought the wind for an extra mile. The tears on my cheeks were not from pain or fear, or even sadness for my fallen deer friends, but from the chilly air squeaking past my sunglasses. They mingled with sweat and snot.
So, it wasn't a speedy run, and it wasn't a perfect run. My pace and effort were seriously affected by the wind. But, in some regards it was just what I needed.
It was a run, and I was free to run it.