I was out for my constitutional today and met the usual runners, walkers, cyclists, friendly farmer , dogs …..
As I was almost back I saw a very well dressed man with two young children – about 4 and 6 years of age coming towards me. I decided that he was probably a home schooling/ working father who was taking the kids out for a bit of fresh air over lunch time.
I couldn’t but overhear parts of what the father said to the children who were bouncing along the road as they got very close to me.
“An Excel spreadsheet … figures.”
He spread his hands out and moved his fingers as if typing on a keyboard.
I thought back to walks with my father at that age and they were all about the natural world – the formation of the clouds, the shimmer off the sea, the tiny robin perched in the hedge, the possibility of a running race when we got to a straight bit of the road …..
He certainly didn’t go into stuff about ledgers and interest rates which would have been his work mode.
The two kids this morning didn’t seem to be overly interested in Excel spreadsheets but maybe they are destined to be computer wizards in a few years or maybe they’ll be tying to ‘find themselves’ out in what is left of the wild world.
I am still having issues about feeling like the invisible woman when I am out walking. I crave social distance and now that my ankle is still very unstable after the sprain, I find it extremely unnerving to have to step off pavements to avoid gaggles of people who clearly never heard of the 2 metre guidance or the concept of single file or just plain manners.
I heard of one approach to achieving a bit of space from a friend of mine who has a big ferocious looking dog. He walks on the inner and has the dog on the outside and finds that people keep a very wide berth.
Maybe I need to rent an Irish Wolfhound or a huge German Shepherd as our dogs don’t do the trick when it comes to scary, scary. Instead, kids come running to ask if they can pet them!
I’d love to hear of any strategies you have found that work for you, apart from screaming or glaring at people, when you are walking alone and wanting that 2 metres.
PS. I see some people pulling up a mask as I approach as if to send out a silent message but as I wear glasses this could lead to some steamy encounters!
PPS.Would singing loudly do the trick as I am a crow? What songs would work best, I wonder …
My very special haunt, and one that I visit every single day, is Newtown Wood, just about a mile from my home here in Tramore.
Only yesterday a couple stopped me at the top of the wood, where I’d parked the car, and asked: Where does that path go?
For me, it’s a path that leads to peace, ever-changing nature and the sea. Newtown Wood goes back to the O’Neill-Power family, of the now sadly decrepit Newtown House who planted the trees almost two hundred years ago.
Newtown Wood is the place where I think, plan and go forward with renewed anticipation each day. I know it so well, at this stage, that I feel I can read its every change and mood, just as it seems to be able to read mine.
Here’s a sense of how it has been over the last few mornings when I’ve been there with ‘puppy’ Stan:
I’d love to hear about your special haunt and/or the place where you take your daily constitutional.