Letters of Life

Running at the Speed of Light

Peacekeeper missile after silo launch, Vandenb...

The four men walked briskly to the start point of the trail, a path of bright earth hemmed on both sides by stands of trees by the edge of the reservoir lake.

Joining us regulars was the “new” guy, a seasoned marathoner-Ironman type. Typically, he took off at the get-go. The rest of us, in our warming up strides, watched in dismay as he rocketed 200 metres ahead. Uphill.

Ah well. I trotted on, knowing there were four hills to climb to the endpoint and the same four hills to conquer on the return. Foolishly I thought I would be able to catch up with some of them, say, around the three-quarter mark on the forward run; those hills are notoriously cruel to the uninitiated. What’s more, the Beyond-Visual-Range (BVR) Rocket had just come off a 12-hour flight to Europe the previous evening.

At the halfway mark forward, I recognised The BVR Rocket running towards me. He was on his return trip.

After him came the ex-Navy Diver, a kinetic powerhouse of an anti-ballistic missile system. He was followed by the Air-to-Air Missile, and then by the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM).

I must be mad to be running today. The only people I overtook were those walking.

Moral of the story: Never run with rockets.

Related reads:

A Run In The Park : A post about one of the missile runners mentioned today

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