I sit next to Eliza at work. She wasn’t in the office when I first joined and when there was an office move. She had that scenario of coming back to work and saying “who the fuck is Dai?!” That could well be the basis for our relationship.
Despite all the pressures and demands of her role, Eliza is that person whom finds a way to make sure everyone around her is happy, having a good time and entertained. I don’t know what she eats but I assume it’s pure unrefined sugar by the pint. She’s nonstop. There are one of two certainties when she arrives in the morning, I’m either staring blankly at a spreadsheet or in plotting routes on Strava. So she knows all about my running.
One day she rocks up and tells me she started running. No probing, she just blurts our “I should run with Dai”. There’s no recovery from that. You’re in. Signed up. Meeting invite sent (like it’s a valid work session) and we are set.
On the day it is pretty grim and she is back to back in meetings all day. But she is undeterred. Nothing is stopping this run or her momentum. We head out for a quick loop of St James park to keep it simple. Chatting away I soon find she’s vanished. She’s a few meters behind me flapping like a loony and running tiny loops on the path trying to avoid the birds. I’m so amused. This is an impossible task in Central London! It turns out she really dislikes birds!!
As we carry on the rain comes to taunt us. That sort of really heavy, fast cold rain you’d call a ‘downpour’. There was no escape. Within a few minutes we are soaked through. After finishing the run with a hi-five I return to my desk to find her drenched jumper draped over my chair like a punishment.