To Be Frank - This rambling’s extreme
I love a nice walk and luckily I live near woods and fields with extensive public footpaths. But no one told me rambling is an extreme sport.
Seriously! I’ve been jumped by dogs, nearly bitten, almost run down by a horse, and a Land Rover, and practically had a shotgun pulled on me.
And that was just last month!
One sunny Sunday morning I’d almost got to the top of a pretty steep hill when I saw a chocolate brown Labrador bounding towards me, full tilt.
He’s going to stop in a minute, isn’t he? Or at least slow down. He’s ...
No he’s not!
I was secretly pleased I’d managed to stay on my feet, and the dog’s owner was such an affable chap, apologising profusely, that you couldn’t be too put out.
However, my sunglasses, despite being in a case in my pocket, still did a comedy Eric Morecambe impression the next time I tried to put them on. And I got a few raised eyebrows at the opticians when I said I’d been involved in a collision with a Labrador.
But that was in marked contrast to another doggie episode. I’d already passed the owner – who stared stonily as I smiled and walked past. The next thing I know, there was this young and clearly extremely excitable dog, running round and round me, and jumping up at me all the time.
Trouble was, it just wouldn’t stop. I stopped, it kept on. I tried to move away, it just followed me. Now I don’t mind dogs, but this one quickly went from playful to complete and utter pest. And after it had virtually bitten my hand, I was starting, shall we say, to get a little cross.
All the time the woman simply stood in the distance somewhere and just bellowed at it. And Fido wasn’t paying a blind bit of notice. Can’t say I blame him, really. She just got angrier, and bellowed louder. Not once did she try to come and take charge, or God forbid, apologise.
She never did say a word to me. Me, I was thinking of words like “dangerous,” “dog,” “court,” “prosecution” ... and “useless,” “rude,” “idiot” and “owner.”
Eventually, as excitable young dogs do, he suddenly decided it would be more fun to try and lift a rotting branch three times too big for his mouth, and I was able to escape.
Then there was the time a horse cantered out of nowhere at speed, right in front of me, the rider clearly showing off to her mate, because she blundered into a mud patch and nearly got thrown off.
Or the day a Land Rover suddenly did a right turn, right in front of me, and almost straight over my feet, without any kind of warning, on a public footpath. The driver giving a magisterial wave as he went.
Or last week, when probably the same Land Rover approached me, pulled into a field entrance, reversed a little, and then the driver suddenly and dramatically lopped a double-barrelled shotgun out of his window, with me just yards away.
Are you trying to tell me something, or are you just Norfolk’s answer to Al Capone?
So never mind “nice walks” – this month I plan to stay in more. It’s safer!
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Weather for King's Lynn
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 5 C to 13 C
Wind Speed: 16 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 6 C to 18 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North west