Tatiana Androsov
4 min readDec 17, 2023


Running at Seventy-Six

The other day, I was stunned to receive a small manila envelope with inside it completely unexpected news. I was the 2023 5k age group winner of the North Texas Turkey Trot!

Hah? I checked what that meant by going to their website. Well, it was the women’s seventy-five (75) to seventy (79) group. Guess there were not many of us. Perhaps, I was even the only one? It didn’t matter, it made me smile and laugh. You see, I have never participated in a race. Previously, I had run in the Dallas Turkey Trot in 2006 and in 2012 but only to see if I would make it before they stopped timing. Barely did.

This year thought it would be interesting to see if I simply could do it. However, signing up I really did not pay attention to any details. After all there was only one Turkey Trot? Only spotted my error after having paid. Well, I would get their sport shirt by mail, a dark blue one, something to add to the two frayed Dallas ones that I had from memory lane. However, discovering I had to pick it up, I was somewhat disconcerted. I did not feel like driving up there. Besides, I couldn’t. My twenty-year-old jalopy would not make it.

Pondering, I almost resigned myself to foregoing the pleasure of the run. You see, I have been running since I was nineteen, yep nineteen. It was in college and my first African/American friend came to my room one day and said, “Ok, we’re going around Upper Lake.” Thought she meant walk, but she elucidated. We were going to run. Well, it turned out into a walk/run because of me, but it was the beginning of what is now a fifty-seven-year adventure.

I say that because I’ve literally run all over the globe north to south from Greenland to Cape Town and the south of Australia, from east to west from New York, France, to India, the Philippines, San Francisco and, of course, now Dallas, without mentioning all the places in-between, that is the places that work and life have taken me to.

There are times that stand out, like the first years in the outlying areas of Geneva, Switzerland in the 1970s, when farmers used to stand, pipes in hand and dog by their side, watching this crazy woman run on the roads that their tractors used. Then there was the time in Cambodia when the head of the United Nations Civilian Police in my province agreed to run with me as long as I would help him improve his English even if I could not keep up with him and had to bow out. Well, I made it! The first time, the minute I got into my house on stilts and knew I was out of his sight, I let myself fall to the floor. I won’t tell you what I felt in my legs. It got better. Of course, I helped him with his English. We became buddies, and I earned the respect of the civilian police and the military.

Guess, unconsciously, I was always better at it than I gave myself credit for, even though I never looked for speed. I just like to go to places on my feet, over grass, looking at trees, admiring different types of architecture, noting the people that I cross, from the child in Cameroon carrying a blasting radio on his shoulder, to the street painter in Haiti up above Port au Prince. Guess the last was in much better times, and I would not dare run there today.

So, when my best friend, my ‘brother’ in Dallas, volunteered to drive me up to take part in the North Texas Turkey Trot in Frisco, I could not help but accept. I would see a different turkey trot from the one in Dallas. And, yes, it was different, with thousands but fewer people than in the big city, with lots of laughs and smiles, something much more relaxing.

That was how I ran. There was a handsome, tall, young African American, who started a couple of feet away from me. I talked to him a bit. It was his first attempt. He reminded me of that very first time. There was the man huffing and puffing right next to me at most three hundred feet from the finish line. Asked him how old he was. “Sixty-seven,” he answered, “and you?” When I told him I was the inverse, he made a last-minute dash, coming in just before me.

However, he was exhausted while I was fresh and smiling. I was running for the fun of it. Yet, I think I might try the 8k next year if I make it. One never knows After all, I do run five miles and even a bit more rather often in good weather because I want to midway reach a certain point and watch over a little stream behind a nature preserve.



Tatiana Androsov

A novelist on the sea of life coming, cresting and breaking having traveled near & far from a post WWII immigrant childhood to a UN world of poverty and riches.