I took the dachshund for a very short stroll today, treading gingerly. That's a bit like treading cuminly, but not at all like treading corianderly. The pain in my hip was less this morning, but up to the forestry and back brought it on strong again. Shooting pains right down to my feet every few strides, and don't even think about twisting. I may have to try something else, like doing nothing at all for a few days. Poor dachshund, he so loves his strolls.

Up at the entrance to the forestry tracks, they've dug a deep culvert to carry off the rainwater. Actually it could do with being about five times the size, what with the amount of rain we get here, but I guess the chap with the digger looked at the plans and thought 'nah, they can't mean that deep.' Today it was mostly dry, just a few dark and evil-smelling puddles lurking around, waiting for the next shower. And in one of these, scrumpled up and discarded from the window of a passing car, was a single page of a Great Britain road atlas.

I wasn't nosey enough, or indeed foolish, to grubble around in the ditch and fetch out the page, so I'm guessing when I say it was probably the one covering this immediate area. You can imagine the scene as Colin and Esme, on their holidays over from the east coast, meander across the Welsh mountains in search of life.

Colin: I'm sure I've seen that dead tree before. Haven't we gone this way once already?

Esme: No. It says Ysb... Ysby...Ys-something. We'd have seen that if we'd been through it.

Colin: What about those two houses and that old dog? That could've been a village.

Esme: Don't be silly, Colin. Villages have shops, and pubs. And bus stops.

Colin: We've been driving through these mountains for hours, Esme. I didn't think Wales was that big. We must have taken a wrong turn back by the burned-out holiday cottage.

Esme: Are you suggesting I don't know how to read a map, Colin?

Colin: Not at all...

Esme: Only it sounded a little bit like you were criticising my navigation.

Colin: No, no. I just...

Esme: Who got us all the way from Cromer?

Colin: Esme, don't be like...

Esme: Who told you exactly how to find the way around Birmingham?

Colin: Esme...

Esme: Who, Colin? It was me, wasn't it. I've got the map, I know where we are. You do the driving and I'll tell you where to go.

Colin: Oh look, there's that tree again.

There then follows a short scuffle, during which the open page of the map is torn out, scrumpled up and thrown out of the window, coming to rest in the muddy puddle at the bottom of the ditch. Without it, they are even more lost than they were before.

Colin and Esme's dead bodies will be found in their car at the end of a narrow no-through road. Everything even remotely edible in their car will have been eaten, but they will have died from thirst as they only packed the one thermos of tea. Outside it will be raining, of course.


Trace said…
Hahahaha! You're awesome, James.

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