Sunday, October 9, 2011

You live, you learn

The weather is getting nicer here, and I decided it was time to try for a run on the beach. Took my phone with me so I could keep time and know to turn around after 20 minutes or so.

I had a lovely little run, went to parts of the beach that have way fewer people on them than Surfers' Corner, admired the landscape for a bit and reversed direction. Just as I was entering slightly more populated territory again I stopped to practice some handstands, cartwheels and other Capoeira shenanigans -- sand is much more forgiving than concrete. Put my shirt on the ground, weighed it down with my phone, and started trying some tricks amongst avid walkers and dog owners.

After a little while a group of five or six boys, maybe 12 years old, appeared on my part of the beach and came up to me. "What are you doing?" -- "Can you do this?" -- "Can you keep your legs in the air for a long time?". At first I was a bit skeptical, but then I started chatting to them and showing them how to do a bridge. "Can you do that for a long time?" -- "Let's see how long you can do it for!"

I'd just managed to drop into a bridge from standing and graciously resolved to humor them. "Five, six, seven..." I saw them upside down, scurrying around me like kids do, running to the nearby dunes. "Twelve, thirteen, fourteen..." At about 18, the one counting out ran off as well.

By the time I'd fully disentangled myself, they were all well out of reach. Still running and looking over their shoulders to see if I was going to come for them. I realized what had happened, spun around, found my shirt still there (thank God!), but no phone. For a split second I was contemplating starting a chase, but it really wasn't worth it for the cheapest phone the local supermarket has to offer. Instead I began trotting back into the sunset over Muizenberg, chuckling at my own idiocy.

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