Run, Luka, Run!

I think I should work out more.  It’s a healthy habit and whenever I do it I feel pretty good-both physically, and self-esteem-ly.  I decided yesterday that I wanted to go for a run to the Tbilisi Sea.  When I got home, Luka was there, so I invited him along!

Luka got all geared up in his running outfit and even found us a frisbee to toss at the beach!  He didn’t know what a frisbee was, but at my suggestion, he borrowed one from Koba, our upstairs neighbor.  Luka had wanted to bring Badminton rackets with no balls or shuttlecock, (To those of you who are giggling at “balls” and “Shuttlecock,” I say this, “;)”! ) but I convinced him a frisbee would be a better idea.  Time would prove me wrong.

We started off running, but after probably two minutes Luka said, “Raughley!  Please stop.  I am tired.”  I’m not saying Luka’s out of shape (I’m certainly no paragon of fitness!), but Luka would also benefit from working out more.  We ran with frequent walkbreaks the whole way to the Tbilisi Sea, encountering many exciting things on the road.

Look how tiny it is! As a point of reference, Luka is probably 4 ft. tall.
For anyone who's sick of seeing photos of street-cats, here's a street-puppy! He looks super chill.
Luka took many walk breaks. Including this one up the steps. Is it unreasonable for me to expect a ten year-old to keep up?

We finally arrived at the Sea on this cold, cloudy afternoon to play some frisbee.  This may have been an unwise plan as the Tbilisi Sea’s beach looks like this:

Yeah, it's flooded and there's not too much space to run around. This led to problems as you will soon find out.

Luka had never played frisbee before and so he needed some coaching.  Case in point, the first throw of the day:

Nice shot, Luka! That's our red frisbee under water.

With some practice, however, and a repositioning to ensure Luka’s shots didn’t fly into the water anymore, Luka became a champion in no time!

I call this, "The Goldeneye Shot"
Oh snap! Look at those shadows!Luka was a pretty active frisbee player. He's got nothing on Owen Reynolds, though. Miss you, O$!
Having perfected his stance, Luka was able to throw much more smoothly and accurately!

Despite my amazing flawless frisbee lessons, the occasional shot went awry.

This shot isn't actually going wild, it's pretty on target. It's just hard/awesome to take photos with my left hand while playing frisbee with my right.

Sometimes they flew astray with disastrous results!  Actually, considering the giant holes in the ground and the broken bottles all over the place (See three photos back for the huge pothole next to Luka’s foot and two photos back for the cliff just behind Luka.  Can you spell “Responsible Host Brother”?  Because I so am the embodiment of one!), this entire endeavor could have gone much worse than it did.

As it happened, I recklessly lobbed a shot off a cliff and into the Sea.  Luka ran to the edge of the cliff and watched for a moment before looking at me and clapping a hand to his mouth in mild dismay.  I feared I had clocked the old fisherman on the noggin’ with this one and asked, using a combination of English and sign language: “Did I [punch self in head and point towards fisherman]???”

“No, no.  But frisbee [from a horizontal position slide hand down towards ground, nose first].”  Oh boy.  This one was in pretty deep.  We peered through the murky waters to locate the frisbee and Luka insisted on going in after it himself.

He really wouldn't let me go in, even though I am taller, older, and arguably not supposed to let my ten year-old host brother go in the cold Sea when it is autumn and raining and we're 3 kilometers from home....

The water proved too opaque and chilly for Luka to have any success.  The fisherman ignored us, mostly, and kept casting discomfortingly close to Luka.  I could just imagine what kind of problems we’d have if Luka got snared by a fishhook or stepped on a piece of broken glass.  Yick, makes me nervous.

So we decided to abandon the frisbee.  Koba’s frisbee.  Koba’s frisbee that was so adored by his infant son that I had earlier had to pry it finger by finger from Niccolo’s hands.  Awesome, now I feel like a jerk.

But wait!  What’s this?  Luka is stripping off his clothes and jumping back in the sea?  “Throw rocks to show where the frisbee is!” he instructed me.  “Good idea, Luka!  You go in the water and I will throw rocks at you!”  Despite my sarcasm, the idea worked!

Disclaimer: Luka is NOT naked. Luka IS wearing underwear.

With frisbee triumphantly in hand, Luka returned to shore and put on his previously soaked clothes without stepping on any shards or falling in any ditches.  The weather had gotten colder and the clouds were returning.  We were probably going to get rained on on our way home.  I was probably going to be the cause of Luka’s impending case of pneumonia.

We started running home and Luka soon complained of a leg cramp.  I doubt he had one, but seeing as he was soaking wet and only ten, I indulged him and we walked the whole way.  He refused my offer to buy him a coke as a gift of apology.  I felt kind of bad about the whole ordeal.  Bright side?  We found an exercise playground and I utilized it and escaped with both thumbs intact!  Take that, bane of my digital existence!

It probably helped that I wasn't drunk this time....