I’ve been keeping track of my jogging mileage since the early 1990s, when a return to running coincided with the purchase of a computer that ran spreadsheets. So I can report with a mixture of pride and embarrassment that, some time this spring, I will have recorded enough miles to circumnavigate the earth. That’s approximately 24,859 miles by way of the poles, and I am closing in on 24,750. (If I had gone around the equator instead of the poles, it would have been warmer but longer -- 24,901 miles – and I’m feeling lazy.)
The nice thing about taking the polar route is that I can pick a destination in the United States to begin and end the trip. I chose Mt. Diablo in Northern California, because I’ve been there and it has a meridian marker that is used all over Northern California. Indeed, my trip started in 1993 with a notional jog south along Meridian Avenue in San Jose and a dive into the sea at Carmel. After that, apart from Antartica, I didn’t touch dry land until I hit Oman, Iran, and the ‘stans.
Now, nearly twenty years later, I’ve been slowly working my way south from Seattle to Mt. Shasta; By my calculation, I have just picked up the first Meridian Road since 1993 -- outside Chico. In the next few weeks, I’ll pass through Meridian, California, and then, in the last week or two, I’ll take another Meridian Road through Elmira and on to the runway at Travis Air Force Base. Finally, I’ll cross the Sacramento River near Pittsburg, head through Clayton, and slowly mount the slopes of Mt. Diablo.
If only I’d planned better, that last part would be downhill, but it’s still good to be back!