It is a grand summer of sport in Britain this 2012.
Amidst the watching, supporting and cheering for me is a lot of running. Well, not as much as I want but a fair bit.
When arriving in a new city, as a visitor or new resident, two feet gives a sense of the scale, variety, neighbourhoods and streetside vibe of a city.
In London rather than precisely mapped out routes I embrace the likelihood of getting lost by picking a destination to run to, a direction really, and see where I end up. Oyster and Visa cards tucked behind my iPod for escape if needed; which inevitably they frequently are so my scheduled ten mile run doesn't become twenty.
This September my wife and I are running for Chateau Pichon's team in the Bordeaux Marathon. Not the most serious of marathons given the fancy dress, wine sampling and restorative oyster stations. Nonetheless 26.2 miles through the greatest vineyards of Bordeaux is still 26.2 miles under the clock.
So for me, it has been the summer of run. These are my 10 favorite so far.
1. A regular route along Regents Canal - usually to the concrete bound East and periodically to the vacant green West.
2. The Dutch seaside outside Den Hague. Yes, the dutch have a seaside. No, it's not worth going out of your way to see. Unless you like running on brutally soft sand with bitter unrelenting sand filled wind pummeling your face.
3. Amsterdamn on Queen's Day - run ended at 10am with streets filled with kids performing their talents (not all with imposing Tiger dads looking and texting for record contracts.)
4. Primrose Hill track - old school narrow track in leafy ambiance for speed sessions (which generally aren't that speedy.) Chariots of Fire soundtrack should be on loop.
5. Running of The Bulls - Pamplona, my shortest run, about 200m into the stadium, of total chaos. Nobody told me that once you've survived the bull run, they close you in the ring and release 5 more bulls for recreational goring. This guy nearly got me, but too slow amigo...
6. Richmond - the old royal herds of red deer for hunting are much more tame yet still wild.
7. Montmartre - my old route around Sacre Coeur when I first moved to Paris, still worthy of a lap around the hill each visit. Though unlike my first run one chilly and dewy January morning in 2010 I no longer slip on the tricky reverse camber paving stones.
8. Canal du Midi - outside Revel in the South of France, technically a feeder canal from Bassin de St.-Ferrol that gave 10 miles powered by the previous nights frog's legs and Gaillac. This was a good one, really good.
9. Cairngorm - not a run but hike atop the Cainrgorm range for skiing in May. The world offers many peculiar experiences.
10. The Olympic Torch - I didn't run with it, I did run 6 miles to view it with all the middle aged who's who of Shroeditch.
With the Olympics starting Friday more runs of note are expected. Bring it.