I so needed a run this morning even from the Ramada at Newark Airport. I came out on to the access road and it looked quiet and started running. After about half a mile on a terrible road in a horrible area, a van passed with Uniformed guys in it wildly gesturing to me. I thought that they were telling me the pavement was on the other side of the road so I waved: ‘thanks’ and continued on running along the pavement.
Soon I saw the State Correctional Facility on my right. it bore a passing resemblance to the hotel, apart from more barbed wire. Check out the link and the picture to see what I mean! I ran up to the road leading up to it and on a bit, then turned round as the road ended. As I ran back a police car pulled along side me; ” You are committing a felony by being on this road’ ‘Can’t you see the Correctional Facility and didn’t you read the sign.’ I apologised and ran back to the hotel with the police car shadowing me on the other side of the road. As we reached the sign I looked back to read it, he gestured for me to look at it. I read it, and then gestured apology, and he gestured, okay, you are clearly an ignorant alien who does not understand US Law. And then he drove off and I resumed doing what I was doing at the start of my run, which was to run round and round the huge hotel car park. (By the way, highly recommended as a stimulating way of passing the time, and hugely enhanced by avoiding cars screaming out of their parking spots at 100mph with the driver adjusting the radio or looking for his iPod.)
What I learned: pay attention to the environment; remember what might appear VERY familiar might not be, and then you miss the key signs. So running by a prison can be quite like life!