Tuesday 19 August 2008

hunting the deer

Summer's gone with calm days
Ungentle now is Biscay Bay
A cold fear claims my heart
God save all sailors from the cruel waves

Some years back there was a sailor who set off on a round the world race but didn't actually go round the world. He just sort of hung around the Atlantic for ages, sending off the occasional false position report relating to his imaginary voyage. I think he ended up killing himself, but I'm not sure about that bit.

Hum. As for my wonderful and adventurous summer holiday, it didn't exactly happen. A week after my falling-off-the-bicycle-while-reaching-for-a-conker incident, I got some quite severe pain in my chest, which was diagnosed as a broken rib. So we had a quiet time at home.

We had a little expedition to Warleigh Weir, one of K's absolute favourite places. But the rain we've been having lately had swollen the river to dangerous levels, and swimming was out of the question. When she saw this, K started crying. Sometimes life doesn't do what it says on the packet. I felt helpless.

...and we went hunting the White Hart of Coppett Hill, up in the Wye Valley. We'd spotted this as we canoed down the river, painted on a rock face high up on the hill, and I wanted to see what it looked like close to.
...didn't make it to the rock; too wheezy. But it was a nice place to walk in, and we saw a couple of real life deer and observed the sociable pooing habits of the local badger population. So it was a good expedition, in that it contained serendipity and unexpected stuff. And it didn't rain until we were back in the car.


  1. Ouch that broken rib sounds painful!

    Shame that such a wonderful stream of water should have spoiled K's day - made a great photo but I can quite see it would have made swimming far too risky.

    Hope you get better soon.

  2. Hope your rib is on the mend.

    A round the world sailer phoned in live to the french news broadcast one evening and took up most of the news, it turned out to be a hoax which was nice as the newsreader was PPDA - a very arrogant sod.

    I must remember to quote "Sometimes life doesn't do what it says on the packet", next time someone in my family moan.

    Is badger's poo classed as "unexpected stuff"?

  3. I'm sorry to hear about your rib, Dru. I know how painful that can be - and I'm sorry that it spoiled your holiday plans.

    K is very lucky. I think that in years to come, her memories of all her adventures with you will truly be treasured. You set a fine example for me to follow with my daughter.

  4. Sorry to hear about the rib.

    Donald Crowhurst was the fraudulent sailor.

  5. Thank you, all! The rib is very much on the mend. The doc said that it takes a week to make itself known, a week to hurt and a week to mend. So I'm nearly finished, and can go and fall off again. Or not, as I please.

    Hm, we didn't set off with badger poo on the to-do list, Anji, but it's all part of life's rich pageant. The scrapes were remarkably symmetrical, and it seemed odd that they should go to such trouble to make neat holes and then not cover them up when they'd used them; but Geraldine the nature expert tells me that badger latrines are communal, so I guess that explains it.

    Thanks, Chris; I just read up the Crowhurst story, thanks to your input. What a mess he made of it; poor chap.