Wait for Me! (Keeping up With the Twenty-Somethings)


My daughter Christina ran 6 miles in less time than it took me to walk 3. She was doing her stretches on the sidewalk when I arrived back at the Lululemon store in Berkeley. Photos by BF Newhall

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

I was all of three or four years old, pumping away on the pedals of my tricycle, near tears because the big kids were leaving me behind.

“Wait for me!” I cried.

Nobody listened.

sidewalk on college avenue, berkeley, ca. Photo by BF Newhall

Before I could get my camera out, the younger runners had disappeared up College Avenue.

My six-year-old brother Davey and his friends had decided to ride their bikes – actual two-wheelers – all the way around the block. Davey had persuaded his friends to let me tag along, but I couldn’t keep up, and nobody would slow down for me, so little and so slow on my tricycle, not even my big brother.

When we reached the other side of the block – far from home – the big kids sped up. In tears, I watched them grow smaller and smaller down the sidewalk, then disappear around the corner.

Today, this morning – same thing. I watched in dismay as my daughter and a handful of other fit twenty- and thirty-somethings took off running, leaving me behind.

I decided to record my humiliation with a photo of their trim figures receding in the distance, but by the time I got my camera out, they had all but disappeared down College Avenue.

Christina had talked me into this. She’d gotten me out of bed at the crack of dawn – 8 a.m. – to meet the Berkeley Lululemon running club at College and Ashby for a six-mile, Saturday morning run to Lake Temescal and back.

At first, I trotted along behind the much-younger runners. But after half a block, I had to face up to reality; I’d never keep up with all those fit young things. But I could do a brisk three-mile walk down College to Broadway in Oakland and back. And that’s what I did.

I don’t know how my four-year-old self found her way home.  Maybe I sucked it up and managed on my own. More likely Davey eventually came back around the block to get me.

The Lululemon storefront Berekely, CA. Photo by BF Newhall

A sweaty Christina was waiting for me outside the Lululemon store at the corner of Ashby and College.

Today I sucked it up. I gave myself a terrific hour-plus walking workout. But by the time I got back to Lululemon, the rest of the running club had finished up and left for home. Except for Christina. Still sweaty from her six-mile run, my daughter was standing outside the store, waiting for me.



  1. Yeah but exercise is way more fun than taxes even if you’re doing really boring stuff.

    • Barbara Falconer Newhall says:

      Yeah. I even did some Spin yesterday after long drive up from LA. I thought I didn’t like Spin, but it felt great.

  2. Ah youth. I know what you mean. Always feel as if I’m running to keep up, too. But good for you for being out there!

    • Yes. I’ve been patting myself on the back all week for my splendid effort on Saturday. The trouble with exercise, however, is that you’ve got to do it again the next day. It’s not like paying taxes, which with any luck at all you only have to do once a year.

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