Monday, 12 April 2010

I have been to the hills

I have roamed far and wide, oohed at the views, and now I have loveliness burned on the backs of my retinas, there to delight me whenever I close my eyes (which is frequently as work is a bit on the dull side today).

(More from the lovely Judy Horacek here.)

Actually, there was one descent that was every bit as steep as in this pic. Except for about the last four metres, which was a sheer drop. I'm brave but I'm not stupid - in the end I crawled to safety through some strangers' back garden, which was very small, very steep and very overgrown. Doing this sort of thing is quite cute and funny when you are seven years old, but in one of my advancing years it is undignified, and perhaps even a criminal offence. For this reason I cannot tell you where I went walking yesterday. You will just have to trust me that 1). it was lovely, and 2). I had a lot of fun.

About five miles earlier, before things all became tangled and desperate, I met one of these little fellas:

He was as surprised to see me as I was to see him.


  1. That little fella looks surprised and a little annoyed! What IS he? A ferret? He seems to be saying, "What? What are you doing here?" How cute!And I can imagine he might put his little paws on his hips give a final hard stare before scurrying away.

    Well, I'm glad you managed to climb your way down safely. It is strange/funny how certain things you do are perfectly acceptable/legal in one context but not in others. And isn't it also a bit weird that a climb up the hill as difficult as it is and as satisfying as it is to stand at the summit...the journey back down is or can be even scarier.

    In my earlier days, during summer I used to make the climb/hike regularly to a well-known mountain used in winter for downhill skiing, but in summer it was dry enough in the trails for uphill and downhill hiking trails. Uphill for me, although incredibly hard (was always a "couch potato"/non-sportsman) each time -- took me a better part of two hours, sweating and slogging with frequent water breaks along the way...was preferable than going downhill, possibly losing my footing and tumbling headfirst into the abyss. Getting to the top meant -- burgers and fries for lunch and a bit of gloating as well as wandering about taking in the incredible vista - that's what kept me focused on my uphill climb while every single muscle throughout the two hours seemed to be crying "oh why, oh why ...again?"

    How did I get down? I took the cable car down.

    By the way, I've checked out Judy Horacek's website and her stuff. She's also a professional speaker as well as artist. What a find she is. She's got quite the exuberance, hasn't she? It's refreshing. Actually, I should get you to check out a speaker and artist I once heard several years ago. He's now a speaker/consultant as well. He wrote a book along with his boss the CEO of Keyspan, an energy company (New York). You can google Kenny the monk. His book is titled "The CEO and the Monk". His main schtick is the working life and spirituality.

    Frankly, I find nothing spiritual about the workplaces I've been in, but the best times I've had was actually playing hooky. I once snuck out with an co-worker to the local park with a small pond, ducks, and some boats for rent (you know, those foot pedal boats) . It wasn't planned but since not much was happening or needed to get done that day, I convinced a colleague that it was OK to steal away as long as we made up the time later... Truth be told, most workers put in MORE hours than they're paid for...


  2. That is one very cute pine marten Crab me dear. It sounds like you had fun!

    By the way, trespass is not a criminal offence, it is a civil one, despite the signs you often see which say "Trespassers will be prosecuted", it is in fact a civil matter, not a police one. Unless of course it involves breaking and entering, or criminal damage. So rest assured my dear, your hitherto unblemished character (assuming you have one of course) remains intact!

  3. Thank you Pork Chop, that is reassuring to know. To my credit (possibly?) I did knock on their back door, with a view to apologising profusely and asking if they'd let me out their front door. Which I know is taking the whole "Right to Roam" thing too far, but I was prepared to offer them my choc-coated high-energy snack bar as an apology. Which wouldn't have been much of a gift really as I'd already eaten a third of it.

    Anyway, no-one was home, which was how I ended up tunnelling through the undergrowth and out a side gate that I struggled to open through the overgrow bushes.

    I think it might have been a small stoat as it was nothing like pine marten habitat. It really is cute though, isn't it?

  4. Hi Snacky. Getting a cable car down from the top of a mountain sounds like pure bliss! A couple of years ago I ran all the way down a mountain in Scotland (it was getting late and we wanted to get to the pub) and my legs hurt so much afterwards I genuinely thought I'd ended up with one leg shorter than the other.

    Which takes us back to the BinMan in Corrie!