Dear Puget Sound,
“45 minutes. Let’s go to the wall.” I’ve heard this expression a countless number of times. More than I could ever hope to keep track of. Running cross country in high school is all about repetition and consistency. You need to show up every day and bring your highest level of dedication, even if you’re running a route repeated number times throughout the season. There is one expression of good news I never get bored of however:“45 minutes. Let’s go to the wall.” The “wall” is a small, 3 foot tall, brick wall at the edge of a three-way intersection that leads away from Madison Park on Lake Washington Boulevard. It looks out onto the 520 bridge to the left surrounded by Lake Washington, an integral part of the Puget Sound Watershed. The “wall” is no easy run from Seattle Prep, but it is quite the scenic route, and the wall is the cherry on top.
The view is just as comforting as it is breath-taking. As my teammates and I stand together on top of the wall we look out and embrace the water that has nurtured and entertained us throughout childhood and even now in high school. Together we feel a sense of interconnectedness with the community surrounding us. This is our territory. SPXC territory. Prep runners have run the route to the wall and back as long a wily veteran coach Doc Robertson can remember. And it never gets old (sort of like coach Doc). It never gets old because of the natural beauty surrounding us. The natural beauty of the Puget Sound. The wall is the turning point. The point of motivation and inspiration. The point where the beauty of the water gives my teammates and I that extra push to turn around and make it back to school. I will always look forward to the expression: “45 minutes. Let’s go to the wall.” I love Puget Sound. SPXC loves Puget Sound.