Who's The Daddy: It’s much easier to follow an app than to run the course

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You know that statistic that once your kids have grown and flown, you’ll only spend a grand total of one year with them? Well last weekend I reckon we used up our annual quota in one go.

First up, last Saturday they came house hunting with us, primarily to see what we’re effectively trading in the home they grew up in for. They ran the rule over it, and while they both liked it, I suspect they’d rather we kept our current home as some sort of museum/shrine to their childhood until the day we die/get put in a home by them.

The thing is, since Christmas, which is quite a long time ago now, they’ve both set foot in our house about twice each. We see the British Gas engineer who comes to service our boiler once a year more frequently.

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Our place has been on the market for a couple of weeks now and there’s been an an unsettlingly large amount of interest - in that someone will stump up the asking price soon, the For Sale sign with be replaced by a Sold one and we’ll be on our way.

Not sure my knees and back would survive a marathon. Photo: AdobeNot sure my knees and back would survive a marathon. Photo: Adobe
Not sure my knees and back would survive a marathon. Photo: Adobe

The following day we had an early start as me, the boss, daughter #2 and our hyperactive sighthound Walter piled into the car for a trip to Manchester to cheer on daughter # 1 in her efforts in the Great Manchester Run.

We’d arranged to meet at the finish line, after some very specific instructions from daughter #1 to call her - not text her because while her AirPods were in her ears, her phone was tucked in her pocket - when she was close to the finish line to tell her which side of the course we were on so she could run on that side and give us a wave.

Sometimes, when you’re feeling your age, technology that is everyday and mundane to people in their 20s feels like it’s from the future to people in their 50s, and so it proved this time. Turns out there’s an app that, when you tap in a race number, an icon follows them around the course in real time. So we knew where daughter #1 was and her estimated time of arrival.

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Training regularly, apparently, makes half marathons incredibly achievable. We spotted daughter #1 bounding up Deansgate like a gazelle, wearing a relaxed, confident smile. To me, she looked like she’d just set off, not run around the streets of Manchester for just over two hours - but I suppose that’s where being 24 and superfit gets you.

Like back in 2005 when yours truly watched Tiger Woods in his prime saunter his way to The Open title with such effortless grace that he might as well have strolled around the course with his ball in his pocket and dropped it exactly where he wanted it inspired me to drive to American Golf in Preston to buy a set of left-handed Ram clubs, watching daughter #1 glide up the home straight like gossamer on the wind made me and the boss talk about getting our running shoes on again and sign up for next year’s event.

Incidentally, a three-year-old daughter #2 accompanied me to the golf shop that sunny July afternoon, and even back then swung a cut-off pitching wedge the size of a wooden spoon like an expert.

As for running, will our knees, backs and spirit survive? There’s only one way to find out. But what with daughter #2 currently acing week nine of Couch To 5K, who knows, maybe all four of us will be on the start line next May?