A year rolls by quickly, too quickly.  Car insurance due for renewal already!  The agent shuffled through the paperwork and scrolled through the info on the computer screen.  The car is registered under my husband's name. He turned the big 6-5 last year.  "So," she says, "If you're also 65, you'll qualify for a further discount."  An awkward silence followed. "No," I said finally, "That's a little ways away."

At the coffee shop I handed the young fellow behind the counter a twoonie for my cup of brew. "Senior's discount?" he asks.  "Depends," I said (hoping he didn't think I meant the underwear), "Do you consider 55 to be Senior?"  "No," he says, "60".  "Well," I said, "In that case, no."  I left without leaving a tip.

At the MEC - The Pace Setter, the previous night's rain had left the trails well-seasoned.  The course followed the main route around Upper and Lower Thetis, with an added detour at the bridge that took us up the hill towards Phelps, then down for a dip through a swamp. The new twist on an old, familiar route increased the distance to 5.25K for the one loop, and 10.5K for the two-loop race.  I opted to enter the two-looper, with the mind-set that regardless of whether you run through a swamp once or twice, the shoes only have to be washed once.

The race started on the paved road near the main beach, and then we had to funnel onto the trailhead which led to the dog beach.  It was a tight fit for 162 runners.  But, as per the old adage "patience is a virtue", eventually we spaced out and placed ourselves into our pace groups.  For a couple of the creek crossings, rounds of logs had been vertically pounded into the water to make the crossing easier and keep the shoes drier - BAHHH!!  Making use of such an amenity is surely a sign of weakness.  Fortunately the swamp that we had to cross had been left unmarred by such silly, sissy, civilized "up-grading" and gave the runners an opportunity to show their true colours (as evident by the natural shades of caked-on mud on the backs of their legs).

We finished at the main beach for the usual post-race food and schmooze.  The awards were refreshingly short, with 1st, 2nd and 3rd male and female receiving recognition regardless of age-group.  Anyone in need of further validation only had to click on the results after they got home, warm and dry, in front of their computer.  Of course, that's exactly what I did.  However, I'll be checking again later to see if the age-grading has been applied.  You know, that mathematical equalizer that lets you know if you have theoretically beaten any of those young whipper-snappers who bounded through the swamp and scooted up and down the hills to arrive at the finish line and open their carton of chocolate milk while you're still out on the course.  Yes, there are times when I do want the "Senior's Discount".

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