A Story of Night Run

It’s the last midnight; I was running in Ardenwood around Facebook Fremont Campus. Having been running along this trail for weeks, I had no plan to change my routine in such chaos.

At the intersection of Ardenwood Blvd and Paseo Padre Pkwy, a cyclist rode past me very fast. He stopped at about 100 feet away, laid down his bike, and sat on an outdoor power cabinet stuff along the road playing his phone. Then I could tell he was an African American teenager or in his early 20s.

We were getting closer as I kept running. I tried to avoid eye contact with him just because feeling inappropriate to say hello at such midnight. Yet, when we were in twenty feet, it seemed like he waved his hand to me, lightly.

The visibility was limited in the night, the guy was wearing a dark hoody, and I was trying to not looking at him. I was unsure whether he was greeting me or not. Mostly yes though. I nodded my head tentatively in response; it was too light to be noticed, I thought.

I ran past him. The moment I turned my back on him, suddenly, two ideas jumped to my mind. First, I felt sorry that I did not give my feedback to him more clearly, as not only was it rude but also hostile in such a complicated time. Secondly, I was kind of worry about my safety, though the only valuable item being with me was the cellphone in my belt bag.

It was hard to explain how come two contradictory feelings generated at the same time. It was even harder to describe having both feelings in my head, challenging each other – why I was so wary of a guy who just waved his hand to me, should I?

Regretting my disregard, I decided to wave my hand back when I went by on the next lap. But fifteen minutes later, when I saw the outdoor power cabinet again, the guy had already left.

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