On Saturday I did a thing that most people don’t really understand terribly well. I intentionally stranded myself downtown in Indy for the day without a car so that I would be forced to go forth and make the best of the day. I also intentionally didn’t look at the events calendar so I had no clue what (if anything) was going on downtown. If I was going to find anything at all then I’d have to do so on foot and at random. As it happened, it worked out wonderfully.
My fiancee has class downtown on Saturdays all day so I went downtown with her and walked her to class. On the way, we noted a large yellow tube in the road and also that the road was blocked off to traffic. We questioned what this could possibly be but since she was due in class she had to go on her way while I was left to investigate. After dropping her at class I wandered up New York Street and found a gaggle of people making their way down Blackford. Heading that direction the first thing I noticed was that the Indian State Museum is a HOTBED of Ingress activity. There must be 50 portals in a single block area. That distracted me for quite a while as I took out some Resistance Portals (which, since that time have been reclaimed by the Resistance and then re-reclaimed by the Enlightened)
So wandering down that way it quickly became clear that that the day was dedicated to “The Color Run” in which runners make their way around the 5K course and get squirted with all manner of colored powder on the way. Interestingly, it was one of my long-term goals to photograph a Color Run so in some weird happenstance of randomness, I managed to wander exactly into the thing I had been trying in vain to do for a long time. Which, if you know me at all, you’ll know is one of my key life ideas. That the best things happen to you when you’re not really trying to make them happen at all. At any rate, let’s get on to the pictures.
So to begin with I got a surge of energy from the opening. Here’s a shot of the crowd before they get colored on at all. It’s whiter than a Zionsville baseball game!
After a bit of photography at the opening, I decided that the best course of action would be to find my way to the end of the course and walk it backwards. That way I’d catch everyone head-on and as they were coming around the course. Essentially, I was walking the 5K course backwards.
At first, this worked out poorly. This gentleman was the first to finish and I didn’t realize he was a runner until he was already past.
But soon things started to get more lively. This group of four was places 2-6 and I told them so as they went past.
After a bit I came upon a color station. Which was quite an amusing waypoint, plus or minus the obvious danger to my camera equipment from airborne orange dust.
Moving onward, I noted that the course doubled back on itself a bit. The blue checkpoint is apparently the first and it is at this point, more or less, that I noticed the death fog of colored powder and when my camera started to complain of the airborne particles.
Between checkpoints orange and pink, there is a fairly large gap and it is in this section that the crowd began to thicken. I had worked my way through the hard core runners and found myself in the land of the casual attendees and they were exceptionally happy to ham it up for the camera. To be frank, their energy and verve for the event was one of the most delightful moments in my life as a candid photographer. They posed. They strutted. But they were their own happy selves. And that was profound. This really is the happiest footrace on the planet.
I have to admit that I find myself rather sad that I was only an observer of this happiness and that I can’t share any of these moments with the random strangers that were involved. Sad as usual that I feel disconnected from the world around me. Any rate… I traipsed manfully onward until the pink station reared its head.
My camera was already having fits about the dust so I opted to bail out at this point to save the equipment. In a rather desultory manner I wandered downtown….
I didn’t find much of interest until I heard Indian music a couple blocks away. I hurried to determine the source of the ruckus but even after seeing it…. I have no clue what this was about.
All I can say for sure was that it was amazing, very musical and distinctly Indian in nature. I regret, as usual, that I’m on the outside of such events and not in-the-know. I adore Indian culture (and, honestly, people in general) so I regret that I was an ignorant witness.
At any rate, from there I wandered on downtown and then back to IUPUI but didn’t take any pictures. The day turned out to be rather a scouting event for future days. The point is, I suppose, that the city is extremely picturesque and given the right open-minded attitude, there is always something going on. Even in the event when you don’t actually PLAN anything but just let the wind blow you wherever it will. Such is the joy of human experience.