I went for a run today – my first run outdoors in quite a while. I did 2.2 miles, but had to stop and slow down about half of it because I got a cramp in my side. At first I tried stretching. Each time I picked up the pace, the cramp would come back, so I tried jogging slowly and that seemed to take care of it, until I got to the hills.

On my way home, I smiled at a man walking on my street, like I smile at everyone when I’m out running. (Bikers and other runners get extra big smiles) The guy stopped ahead of me like he wanted to talk, so I pulled out my earbuds. He asked if I had access to a car and could give him a ride a few blocks down.

I lied and said I only had my two feet for transportation and headed off to the end of the block. I hit the picket fence, crossed the street and jogged back, passing him on my way. I smiled again, but felt guilty. My car was a block away and I had keys in my pocket, though I wasn’t carrying my driver’s license.

When I got home I came inside and locked the door, and then thought, what if he’s a vampire and followed me home? This is what I get for watching Vampire Diaries. If you believe in TV vampires (not of the Twilight variety) he can’t get inside my house unless I invite him, but he could attack me when I get outside. In which case, I have no defense so why worry?

Then I thought about that saying about angels who come to earth and ask people for help and are saddened when people don’t help them.

Not long ago, I would have offered the guy a ride. I stopped to help people who had run out of gas, or locked their keys in the car. I accepted help from strangers as well.

After years of being chastised for being too trusting, hearing news stories about phantom strangers who attack single women, and the fear that a strange man, once inside my car and alone with me, could have pulled out a gun, was enough for me to lie.

Sorry, I only have my feet.

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