Bon Dia

I’ve started jogging again. Seriously… why do I do this to myself?

I used to be quite good at running. Not long-distance though. I had to teach myself long-distance in my mid-twenties. I learned it like this: find a pace where you can theoretically run forever and stick to it. So, pretty boring. My kind of boring.

Being in the marina and not being able to swim as much as being on anchor has left me feeling fat-arsed lazy lately. I noticed the promenade, which runs down Bonaire’s little capital, Krandelijk is super sweet. It’s also the perfect distance to do a 25-minute jog. Urghh.

I have to go early. If you leave after 7am, it gets too hot on the way back. The sun is just too high – above the low-level Bonaire bungalows. You have to leave latest 6:45am. I’ve done it four times so far, including this morning.

I like the stopping. My friend Lindsay calls it ‘the after feeling buzz’. This morning, I had to hose myself down when I got back. The time before, I had to come downstairs and lay down under the air-con vent. The time before that, I had to just lay down anywhere.

I also like the random thoughts which appear in my head – caused by mindless exertion. They pop out of nowhere. This morning it was how travelling is always about being an outsider with your face pressed against the glass. You’ll never fit in, but you can’t mind it. I felt one leg landing heavily in front of the other. I don’t mind it.

Ahh, then there’s the breathing. I thought that maybe if I have renewed aerobic practice like jogging, I might not have to endure episodes of claustrophobia when we go diving. It might make me more relaxed overall. I don’t know if it’s working yet. I’ll put the time in – for now to see.

I have one more reason for jogging. It is excellent for being nosy. I used to love jogging in London to house-spy and for finding new routes. Where streets met other streets – it was like Google Maps in person. Now, from the promenade, I stare at the houses on the prom and the boats on the moorings, familiarising myself with buildings and vessels.

There are others like me too, sweating and nodding as we pass each other in the early morning. That’s cool. So far, I’ve learned in Bonaire you say ‘Bon Dia’ for good morning. Bon Dia!

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