I’ve written more than once now about what pushes me on as age creeps up quickly, and the aches and pains persist.

At least I get to feel those aches and pains, unlike too many mates who have passed. Well a couple of weeks ago another mate died.

So for him and all the others another ten mile bash with my 30lb Bergen. Lately I’ve been running between 5 and 8 miles in running kit alone…clean fatigue for the anointed. But when I throw in the Bergen and boots, it’s either a 5 miler or a 10.

This morning I dug over the garden, it’s a beautiful spring day. Everything showing some sign of growing and even blooming. There was a rabbit in the neighbour’s garden eating new shoots and having a ball doing it. A family of Northern Red Cardinals and a Blue Jay were sitting around watching the rabbit, as was the odd squirrel. Some of the trees are showing their early blossom. Not a hint of any wind (except from me while I’m turning over the soil so close to having breakfast), Blue skies, and therefore the perfect day in my mind to go for the ten miler.

As always, I take the back streets of my village in the New York burbs. An old man with a grey beard, British Army 70s/80s smock, boots and Bergen, just jogging along at a steady pace…and smiling away.

Most people that I pass have no idea who I am, have no idea where I’ve been in my life, and have no idea why although suffering… I’m smiling.

Like my wanderings around Up State New York, these 10 milers keep me going for weeks or at least until the next one.

Today was for a laddie called Jonathan, I’ve known him for 50 years, he was one of the nicest lads you would ever meet…and I miss him lots, we’d communicate online over all sorts of subjects.

It couldn’t have been a better day…as I write this the weather and beauty of my location is enticing me back outside.

Maybe a day to cut the grass too, it could be classed as my warm down.

None of us know when our time’s up…none of us, no matter our age…our children and grandchildren too.

As sad as that sounds, it’s a trigger to take care of ourselves. It comes of course with no guarantees, but at least it gives us a chance.

There’s lots of life to live yet, if not for our family, then at least for ourselves…remember, every day is a school day…but only if you’re up for learning.

Here’s to Jonathan, and here’s to the next 10 miler, after all it could be someone else doing one for me!

Published by: bobshepherdauthor

Bestselling author Bob Shepherd has spent nearly forty years operating in conflict areas around the world. A twenty year veteran of Britain’s elite 22 SAS Regiment with nearly two decades of private security work to his credit, Bob has successfully negotiated some of the most dangerous places on earth as a special forces soldier and a private citizen. Bob comments regularly on security issues and has appeared on CNN International, BBC, SKY News, and BBC Radio. He has also authored numerous articles and books including the Sunday Times Top Ten bestseller The Circuit. In addition to writing and lecturing, Bob continues to advise individuals operating in hostile environments. For more of his insights on security and geopolitics visit

Categories Uncategorized3 Comments


  1. RIP Jonathan. Thank you for sharing your thoughts Bob. love your outlook on life , you put into words what a lot of us think!

  2. I am doing 10 tomorrow Bob but clean fatigue and i will give you and yours a thought as i also remember Scouse Hanley (para regt and ex 2 sqn) amongst many others . God bless Jonathan.

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