Surprisingly, the best thing was the journey there. As you may know, if you have been following this blog, I have a little blue Mazda MX5. The poor thing has been next to useless for most of the winter months, what with the snow and ice. They really don't do well in winter conditions being rather light, with an engine in the front and backwheel drive. I have had some pretty hairy journeys and was stuck in London for nearly a week in December, unable to get my little car out of the side street I had slid to a halt in when the snow started to come down.
But now she (yes, I am going to give the car a gender) starts to come in to her own. Today I put the top down!! And drove around slowly, like some sad, old Leslie Phillips character, enjoying the wind in my hair (singular) and the noises and smells of the countryside. That's the joy of open top motoring - you drive more slowly because it's so pleasant and because going over 50 is just too noisy and windy and, on country lanes, you can hear the birds singing.
Anyway, my random journey, done for the sheer pleasure of driving (not a phrase you often hear these days), eventually took me to a small village on the River Trent, where I parked her up - no, sorry, that really is too prattish! - I parked my car, secured the top in place and set off along the river.
It was gorgeous. I walked for bloody miles. And then I thought, "Damn, I've got to go back the same way I came." Or did I? Well, yes, I really did. But I wasn't going to do the obvious or even the right thing. I was going to find a way back to my car without retracing my steps. I wasn't going to let simple logic, or even geography, beat me.
I left the river bank and headed across a field towards the nearest road, climbed a fence and then set off along the road in what seemed to be the sort of direction I had come in. It wasn't.
I had been on the side of the river that was curving away, the long side, if you like, and so heading inland meant that my circular journey would inevitably be three times as long as the shortest journey (the river bank) had been. I ended up walking a good five miles back to my car, along winding country lanes and various villages and eventually along a dual carriageway.
My car was waiting, faithfully, for me when I finally got back and, as the sun began to dip low in the evening sky, my tired, sweating frame felt the warm embrace of her leather. I fired her up and guided her sleek lines home, toward the city, rewarding her patience by, once more, showing her off to her best. With her top down.
I think I should stop now? This is turning in to porn!!
|Here she is - in the snow|