What's this all about?

A new adventure beckons, and this is once again about my personal journey to make it happen.

It might make you laugh; it might make you cry, but by 'eck lads and lasses, it will be worth a quick skeg every now and then, tha's for sure.

Thursday, 5 May 2011

2nd tyre-drag was 'different'

Hello to you on this wet cool Thursday evening.

I'm sat up on the mezzanine in my room reflecting on another 'adventure' in Rothwell Park and thought I'd share after people contacted me to say how much they enjoyed my misadventures the first time; thank you especially to Debbie and JuJu for laughing out loud, for Therese for feeling she had to share it on her Facebook page, and of course to the lovely Rosie and Annabel at Help for Heroes for re-tweeting the link to their 44 000 followers.

I decided earlier today that I'd definitely take the tyres out again tonight so despite the gentle pitter-patter of rain on the Velux I donned my Yorkshire Cancer Research t-shirt for tonights yomp across the Park. That and some swimming shorts (call me pessimistic about the weather, but on the bright side they were colour co-ordinated).

Despite me advertising on Twitter that I'd be there at 7:30pm today there was no evidence of the paparazzi lurking in the foliage, long-lenses trained on every strained muscle and no magazine editors, contracts in hand vying for an exclusive, outside the Park gates. There was the 'curtain twitcher' again but .... more of that later.

I'd learned my lesson about the slope in the park after the last time so I unloaded the tyres and manfully grabbed both, carrying them into the Park, laying them on top of each other and deftly lashing the B&Q rope so the tyres were secure.

I was so pleased with myself I smiled at a dog that had just entered the park. Happy (yet agitated) it jumped and dashed from side to side, looking at me and soon I found myself smiling at the owner as he too came round the corner.

His smile however quickly faded to displeasure; I wondered if it was because he thought I was some sort of danger to the public, with a thick red restraining jacket wrapped around me should my unseen guardian feel the need to drag me away from an unsuspecting victim, but no. Nope, his displeasure became vocal and I learned the dogs' name when he shouted "No Tragoe, no".

I looked down and, I kid you not, 'Tragoe' had cocked his leg and was peeing on one of the tyres !! 

All I could do was smile and crack some lame joke that "At least it was on the tyres and not me". Tragoe skipped away, clearly happy to have lightened his load and the man followed smiling, but somehow I doubt it was at my joke !

And so I set off, pulling my perfectly lashed tyres across the wet grass and feeling pretty good at the pace I'd started at. The smooth rubber on the edge of the tyres felt as is if was almost aqua-planing across the mid-length grass of the park and I knew this could be a fast time. The downside of course was that my trainers and socks were acting like sponges, soaking up the moisture from the damp grass and turning them into mobile puddles strapped to my feet.

As I walked across the park I made my way to the top edge, next to a suburban dual carriageway, in an attempt to attract as much passing interest as possible. After all if the local magazine (the Rothwell Record, a truly very impressive publication) features me again perhaps I'll become a regular tourist attraction. Sadly even though there were many more cars, vans and lorries than last time, only the Police car visibly slowed to take in the sight of a man apparently drowning stood up in the increasingly steady rain.

I did see one elderly couple walking towards me with a dog so I said a cheerful "Hi" but they too seemed to think I must be weird as they nodded reluctantly and the woman moved closer to the man, taking a comforting grip of his hand. At a massive 5ft 4inches tall he puffed out his chest and tried to look as commanding as possible in what appeared to be a 'Greenwoods clearance stock' showerproof jacket and a fairly poorly fitting toupee.

He nodded sternly but not offensively as they walked on, pretending to discuss perhaps a deep theological issue when in fact I'm sure I heard him say "Don't worry dear. I had it under control. I'd authorise the use of electrodes as shock therapy on people like that if I was Prime Minister"). I assumed they must be talking about someone else they'd met and almost volunteered a cheery note of support, but I hesitated and the moment was lost. Never seen old folks move so darn fast across a busy road !!

And so my trek continued apace but pretty much uneventful for the rest of the session. I kept checking for dog poop (which is surprisingly well camouflaged when the grass is wet and the soil is so much darker) but I'm delighted to say I think I steered clear of it all. Actually there was one 'pile' that was hard to miss visually; it was huge!!

Now either someone had taken a huge dog or a small horse for a walk in the park .... or maybe some poor Spaniel-size dog is on it's way to the vets for stitches as I type. Oh I'm wincing at the thought the poor thing but the image faded as I made the last few strides towards the park gates at which point ... well do you  remember the curtain twitchers from the beginning of this entry? I swear I saw the two of them now boldly gazing out of the window in some animated enthusiastic discussion.

I found myself imagining one of them stepping out of the house and shouting "Excuse me. I say, you there, excuse me". I would walk across the road and the man would say "Do you mind me asking when you next plan to be back in the park pulling those tyres? It's just we've told all our friends about you and they're keen to pop round to see for themselves; they don't have many nutters in Alwoodley. If you'd be so kind as to come back when the weather is good, we rather fancied having a BBQ too".

Or maybe that's just me hoping I've already caused a bit of a stir in the leafy green lanes around Rothwell Park. Oh well, maybe next time.

P.S. I completed my mile in 44 minutes tonight; not repeatable in the immediate future probably but it felt good to be out and about all the same.

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