Happy U.S. Mother’s Day to all the Moms out there! Whether you are blissfully baking banana bread while having family singalong time, or you’re gritting your teeth while mediating spats through day #4342 of enforced family togetherness, you are undoubtedly working harder than ever to be an anchor in your family! In this group, it’s a safe bet that each and every one of us, whether a mom or not, is care-taking in some way. I admire the unique strength of each one of you, and I love seeing— through our social media circles— the beautiful, funny and sweet ways you each go about taking care of the people in your lives, whether children, partners, pets or friends!
WRW Race around the World update. We are making progress on our trek around the world! After six weeks of running, and only two weeks after officially tackling this challenge, we are almost to San Francisco, having run over 16,000 miles together (but, um, separately)! Devy has given us a beautiful, updated map— this week is probably the last chance to add yourself as a destination if you are in the U.S., so let us know right away if you want us to ‘swing by!’ Meanwhile keep running and exercising— remember, 10 minutes of other exercise counts as 1 mile in our plan! And if you haven’t been participating, it’s not too late to start. Contact your pace leaders for details on how to add your miles to the group. For alumnae we’ve set up a spreadsheet anyone can access— join anytime, record anytime— at this link:
Games Runners Play updates. At least a couple of runners have tackled Bjorg’s London Monopoly challenge on foot, as well as some on bike! Amongst this week’s picture collages you’ll find Vera with her kids, and Stephanie surveying a new Monopoly ‘acquisition’! I also wanted to highlight our first map art submission, which Janelle came up with to celebrate her daughter’s first birthday (remember Colette was ‘on board’ for the Milan trip last year?). I also found a second creation on Strava, and I’m hoping Perla Greenup won’t mind me sharing her heart run!
New Games Runners Play. Several of you sent in suggestions of landmarks and interesting spots for scavenger runs— thank you! We are continuing to work on the list, but we already have a few hunts ready for you, thanks entirely to Miki Neant, Megan Marine, Amber Borst and Amy Grace.
First up is Miki’s City run, highlighted in the photos— including her map!– below. Miki reports that the streets were quiet in this area (at least, as of a week ago), and she lists the following things to look for: the Holborn Viaduct red bridge with statues and staircases, St Sepulchre’s Church and London’s first drinking fountain, Christchurch tower and the Christchurch Greyfriars church Garden, Angels in the sky, St Paul’s Cathedral, and St Lawrence and Mary Magdalene drinking fountain. There is a lot to see in this neighborhood! If you head out on this run, feel free to send us additional spots to hunt for, as well as photos!
Next is Megan’s Statue Visits run. Some of our standard routes cruise by statues we don’t even notice anymore. Megan took the time to look them up, find new ones, and stop to appreciate these neglected ‘running companions’ of ours! (Some photo credits also go to Jennifer Egsgard, who must have been on a similar wavelength this week!) Here’s a great guide she shared on Hyde Park Statues from the Royal Parks website: https://www.royalparks.org.uk/parks/hyde-park/things-to-see-and-do/memorials,-fountains-and-statues . A couple of entertain-yourself-on-a-run ideas? Take as many statue selfies as you can. Or see how many animal statues you can find. And don’t limit yourself to Hyde Park, of course. This city is covered in statues: just try running around Westminster, Trafalgar Square, or Leicester Square without running into a dozen of them. Create your own statue hunt and share it with us!
Last but not least on this week’s list is Amber and Amy’s NHS Street Art tour. We’ve all seen some of the amazing NHS-oriented street art in the news. The map below covers some you can search out in person in the Brick Lane area (you can look up our Brick Lane route at https://womenrunningtheworld.com/where-we-run/destination-runs/). The photos along the bottom of Amy’s map couldn’t be linked to specific locations, so finding them will truly be a hunt, and the photos a real trophy! There’s also a treasure trove of graffiti art at the Leake Street graffiti tunnel near Waterloo, which is also where the NHS Superhero graffiti featured in the top collage can be found! It’s not far off of our Borough Market route, and the collage below comes from Miki’s recent run there.
Save the date, and other announcements! Mark your calendars for Sunday, June 7th! While we eagerly await further guidance from the government about how our social interactions might change in the coming weeks, we have been planning different ways we might celebrate the year of WRW. Stay tuned for more information on what that will look like (mostly virtual, no doubt), but meanwhile we wanted to get the date to you. We’re thinking late afternoon or early evening London time will allow some of our friends around the world to participate. And, as if you need any extra motivation to keep the date open, we will finally be premiering Megan Marine’s brilliant annual video originally created for the Prague celebration!
Also, as we think about end-of-year celebrations, we have to think of the sadder side as well— the goodbyes. Please, please let us know, if you haven’t already, if you are leaving London at the end of the year. We don’t want to miss giving anyone a proper WRW sendoff!
To close, I wanted to highlight some of the WRW families out running or playing together— see the photos below. Several WRW kids got out for runs with (or without) their Moms this week. Just a few we’ve heard of? Jen Ianazzo’s daughters, Devy Schonfield’s son, Julie Hojlo’s son, Shannon Ashton’s son (first 5k!), Rebecca Emery’s son (a 100k week!!!), Vera Kunda’s sons (out for Monopoly) and my own daughter (who will kill me if you tell her I mentioned it!)… and I’m sure the roll call could go on and on! Again, celebrating you strong women, the powerful example you set, and the great care you take of the people (and pets) in your lives! Have a wonderful week, keep running, and stay connected!