Just an update. Yesterday was the Santa Shuffle, 5K. I ended up running an eccentric route, so I don't really know how far I went. I also left my Polar running at the end, so I'm also not sure how long I took. But it was roughly 5 minute pace, and I was scheduled for a tempo run, so that's fine.
The route went crazy because of a young man named Kyle. When I first told the story I was referring to him as an idiot, but that's unfair. Lunatic would be better. He ran clad only in shorts and running shoes, on a chilly day. He was determined to win this thing, and he went off at a fast clip. Then: he was confused about the route, so he circled back at about 2K and came back to the start line. I was some ways behind him, but I saw him turn right at London road (the prescribed route) with his posse following him, then abruptly they all came back the other way. For some strange reason, I folowed. I ended up going off on my own. I assume Kyle did 7K instead of 5. If his posse tried to keep up, they would have been pretty tired.
Today: 11K, mostly a nice country run, with a group (headed by Karen) that is training for a 10 K. A much slower pace for me--close to 7 minutes. Chatting with Jose while we ran, and with other folks before and after. On days like this, it's great to be a runner (despite the cold wind).