Coyotes, Turkeys, and Beans

This morning I stepped into the street for what I had planned to be a 5.2 mile run.  I glanced up the street and noticed my running friend Michelle rounding the corner.  I hurried to turn off my iPod and called out to her.

“Hey!  You up for running together today?”

“Yeah!  Great!  Let’s go!”

Michelle waved her arm in a welcoming gesture and I knew I was not interrupting her run- and so we set out down Old Garden Road.

Michelle runs a little slower than I do, but she runs much farther, too, usually 8 or 9 miles a day.  She almost never takes a day off, even if it’s pouring rain.  She laughs at me when I tell her that, no way, I do not run in the rain.  I am dry clean only.  I don’t mind mist or snow or heat, but rain? uh uh.   Michelle will run her regular route no matter what.

I let her take the lead for the route and wound up running on Marmion Way both ends of the loop.  If you’ve ever been on Marmion Way, you know it’s pretty hilly- and the biggest hills are at either end.  I am  anxious about doing both in the same run, so I run that road only one way in each run I take.  Michelle is nervous about running on South Street, which is why she likes to go the way we did today.

We started talking about our kids and our husbands.  Michelle told me a romantic story about how she wound up marrying her high school sweetheart.  I love getting to know her this way!  The pace was easy, and as it turned out, the hills were not so bad.  Having someone to run with once in a while makes time fly.  The feeling of the run is different because I am focused on pacing together and the conversation,  so I don’t have that sense of timelessness I get when I run alone.  It’s fun to run with a partner who shares so many fitness philosophies and the same addiction.

Today Michelle informed me that there is a coyote—a very large, red haired coyote—that has been plaguing residents on Eden Road.  She is always seeing coyotes.  She runs earlier that I do most mornings, often leaving her house in the dark and headed homeward around the time I am starting my run.  She’s afraid of coyotes.  Any time I’ve seen a coyote, they run away from me. I am much more afraid of the wild turkeys that lurk at the top of Marmion Way and South Street.  Last time I saw the turkeys, I turned right around and took another route.  They chase and bite!  Our local mail carrier refused to deliver to that neighborhood for weeks because of the turkeys.  Fortunately, no coyotes today, and the female turkeys lurking were not aggressive!

We started talking about food and cooking, which is where every conversation I have ever had with Michelle inevitably turns. We both love to cook, we both love to eat, and part of what makes running work for each us is the calorie burn.  Today we talked about soup.  This is the recipe I shared with Michelle.  It is high fiber, high protein, vegan, low calorie, and delicious!

15 Bean Soup


1 bag 15 bean soup mix.  Throw away that seasoning packet!  Soak the beans in water overnight according to package directions.

5 cloves garlic, minced; 1 medium onion, diced; 5 or 6 carrots, scrubbed and diced; 4 or 5 ribs celery, washed and diced.

4 cups tomato sauce, or diced or crushed tomatoes, 5 – 10 oz. cut leaf frozen spinach, 1 cup corn (I use frozen organic), 2 bay leaves, 1 teaspoon liquid smoke, 1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dried oregano, and/or basil.

Olive oil.

8-10 cups vegetable broth.


In a stock pot or large pot, combine broth and beans.  Bring to a boil.   Prepare garlic and vegetables- saute in olive oil over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until vegetables begin to turn brown and soften.  Add tomatoes, bay leaves, and herbs.  Add this mixture to the beans and simmer, covered, for 45 -50 minutes.  Add liquid smoke, corn and spinach, and stir well.  Continue to simmer the soup for about 5 more minutes, or until spinach is incorporated.  I like to grind in quite a bit of black pepper.  Salt can be added at the table, if necessary.  Oh- don’t serve the bay leaves!

I ran 6.3 miles with Michelle in under an hour.  And then- what a surprise- I made soup!

Explore posts in the same categories: Food and Recipes, Run notes that run into life

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5 Comments on “Coyotes, Turkeys, and Beans”

  1. Alex Says:

    haha i would have though you would prefer to run in rain opposed to snow because you hate the cold so much!

  2. Lisa Turk Says:

    Thanks for the soup recipe. Will do tomorrow!!! Just hope I have time.

  3. Davida Says:

    Jeez, Elizabeth, I am in awe! I get tired if I do too many trips from my kitchen to my study. Way to go! I’ll be there to wave you on at your first marathon.

  4. Robin Says:

    As for the coyote on Eden road, friends of mine with a puppy find that the coyote lies in wait for them, when they take their evening walk, and even jumped out an gave chase when they ran away. Next time, the coyote again lied in wait, but my friend brought a bell, and banged it, which made the coyote run away. Each night, it hides in the bushes at the same place, and waits for the puppy… Needless to say, nighttime walks with the puppy have grown a bit more tense.

  5. That puppy clearly looks far more tasty than I do… Nasty coyotes, turkeys, etc…

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