Monday 4 April 2011

Luck on my side

Just a day or two prior to Shep disappearing away lambing I found myself heading east to Alnwick for an opticians appointment. It was the first appointment of the day and went smoothly, I can still see, which is always a big help!

On arrival in the town fire engines, police and ambulance were screeching their way out in the direction in which I had come, I was thankful my car was parked up and that I wasn't trying to pull over on the road somewhere to allow them to go about their duties without being hindered by traffic.

Appointment over, quick spot of shopping then I ambled my way to Amble on the coast, just a few miles away, only to find my friend I had intended visiting was not in, I turned the nose of the car for home and off I trundled. There were cormorants sitting on flotsam in the estuary as I departed the coast, I was aware the daffodils were in full bloom, although the show at Warkworth Castle was a day or two from being at their best. The grassy ramparts at the castle are usually a vastness of yellow bloom and they will be yet but I wont be seeing them.

Heading back over the tops from Alnwick I passed police at the scene of an accident, a car was being strapped onto a breakdown truck, it looked fairly mangled. Probably the reason all the emergency services were leaving the town as I had entered earlier, how fortunate, as this must have quite literally happened minutes from me having passed the spot.

A few miles further on my journey as I was travelling over the tops towards Rothbury I had to park my car up and get out to speak to a man.
"Good morning" I said
"Morning" came his reply "are you alright?"
"Aye, grand. Well, that is until you started flashing at me - not good for a lass that y'know!"
Fortunately my tongue in cheek pun went down the way I had intended and the police officer laughed. I felt slightly more relaxed.

I had been trundling along, minding my own business, viewing the scenery as I went when I had become aware of a police car behind me. Umm,, I was slightly nervous to say the least. Why is it police cars make one nervous? Probably because we know we're in the wrong.

I was aware I wasn't wearing my seat belt, which is a requirement by law in this country. Umm. Now I could slip it on but then that would look pretty obvious so I just nonchalantly trundled along in the hope the police man was enjoying a Monday morning run out in the countryside and not actually looking for trouble. My ploy seemed to work for a mile or two but then.... the blue lights started flashing. I quickly looked in all mirrors and through all windows, it was definitely me - not another soul on the road, no doubting it at all, it was I who was being requested to pull over. Umm!

Once stationary I bounced out of the car and walked along to his and as already stated the ice was broken and we went about the business of sorting the problem. There was obviously going to be one, police don't stop you to ask directions or discuss the pleasantries of the weather. I did think I knew what the problem was going to be and couldn't see a way out of this one, my mind was already trying to recall how much the one the spot fine would be and would I receive penalty points on my license also?

The police officer went on to say "Now it may have been my eyesight (I stifled a laugh, having just been to the opticians this tickled my peculiar sense of humour), but when you passed me back there at the accident I thought your tax disc looked odd"

Oh! I hadn't expected this. Tax disc? now it's not long since I was at the post office renewing the tax disc so that ought to be all alright. I trotted along to the passenger door and opened it with the added embarrassment of shopping falling out onto the ground. Once I'd dealt with the wayward shopping I reached in for the tax disc.

Your tax disc is meant to be secured to the inside of the windscreen, well mine had been, admittedly with insulating tape but it was there. However, it had taken a mind of its own and was no longer on the window, I found it lying on the dashboard, where it was obviously slowly making its way downhill towards the foot well. I do recall having this problem with a police man once before!

All was well, tax disc was the correct colour, no other problems, police officer apologised for his eyesight (which almost saw me suggest a good opticians, fortunately I thought better of it - dont push your luck!), we discussed the car accident, how the driver had lost control, flipped over a fence and rolled the car but was unscathed, both decided we were having a good spell of weather at the moment then uttered our farewells and departed.

I take it this had been a warning, the police officers eyesight was an excuse, he was obviously a very jovial policeman and not wanting too much paperwork on a Monday morning. I made sure I put my seat belt on before I drove away, best not to push your luck too much!