19 Oct 2015

19th October 2015 Through a misty glass, darkly.

Monday 19th 43F-48F, still, with thick mist. My wife, The Head Gardener, insisted I wear a fluorescent arm band on my walk. Though a flashing blue light on top of a real police car might have obtained rather  more of  the commuters' attention. I made it safely to my exit, snapping at berries and misty scenes as I went along. The usual scenery was absent as I braved myself for another skirmish with the pheasants. However, the birds were strangely absent, apart from a couple of  heavily camouflaged lookouts in the brush. They looked harmless enough so I plodded on towards the sound of crashing trees and clonks coming from an invisible forestry harvesting machine.

Despite walking a very soggy loop right around the forest block where I could hear it working, I caught only a glimpse of a solitary tree top falling sideways. Yet the voracious machine could be heard chewing up a new tree literally every few seconds. My familiar tracks were almost blocked by stacked branches in places. Making visibility of the harvester even more difficult. Eventually, I returned to my starting point with my walking trousers darkly wet up to the knee.  At least the earlier mud had been washed off. My charity shop Ecco boots had remained safely dry. Unlike the fragile Salomon boots. Which I have been forced to give up wearing for want of long term comfort and lack of useful waterproofing in the second examples after replacement of the first pair under guarantee. Again, for a lack of waterproofing in wet grass.

Now I was in for a shock! Newly emboldened by their Pyrrhic victory over the amateur, weekend huntsmen the pheasants  had arranged themselves in serried ranks! Armed to the teeth, at the exit from the woods, they had obviously decided that yesterday's 10 o'clock, attack could simply be repeated. There must have been 50 pheasants facing me as I approached with a pounding heart. Then, suddenly, with an almost imperceptible signal from the general in his colourful uniform they simply vanished into the brush! Either they thought I looked far too poor to provide a decent ransom or my determined gait had completely unnerved them. Perhaps they were simply low on ammunition from their weekend's fierce battles with the huntsmen? 

Stepping out of the woods and onto the emperor's dais, [fairly] high above the rolling landscape, I was suddenly presented with a clear view of the countryside. One completely denied to me only half an hour earlier. The mist had cleared to leave the grass-like crops freshly washed and brushed into neat lines. So, another hour and a half of my allotted time on this strange planet was over. Coffee and rolls await to be consumed and then I'm off on my trike. No peace for the wicked. Whoops. Not so fast! Busy at home. Another rest day.

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