My hope for 2014 was that I would write and that Rs21 would prosper.
Instead, it became a year of running; I ran often in the dark, the ground obscured and with nothing to guide my feet save the feel of concrete paths beneath me. I ran up hills in the warmth and alongside lakes in the frost, tapping the ground quicker than was comfortable, hoping above all not to lose my footing. I ran with friends, in very club, and (very often) by myself. I ran occasionally – my best running – with my boys. Through the year, I ran over 1500 miles. I felt at times as if was stripping away years of poor sleeping, sugary foods and a sedentary lifestyle. I ran in around 40 races of varying degrees of competitiveness, taking about 8-9% off my best adult times for a series of distances from 400 metres to a half marathon. Another year of similar progress would bring me back to the runner I was, not at my peak, but when I first began to run competitively at the age of 14.
There is one longer piece I published of which I am proud; but there remain a number of projects I need to finish – fictions taking me back to people I knew, memories of those that I guard and cannot address directly.
As for RS21, I hope that we grow, that new people join us and bring their personalities to the group without disturbing certain subtle consensuses within the group which date back to the circumstances in which we were formed. We cannot be for ever “a group of settlers from Mars who subscrib[e] to Marxism in general, but otherwise ha[ve] to start from scratch on every question”, as one observer described us, but I would rather that we retained our thoughtful, questioning and cautious spirit.