Friday 13 January 2012

Friday 13th........ Lucky for some!

T'is just as the day draws to an end that it dawns on me it is Friday 13th. Thankfully I'm not unduly superstitious or I may not have ventured forth today but t'was far too good a day to miss. A rosy morning once again with a crisp frost followed by sunshine - what more could anyone ask for?

Was luck on my side? Very much so, of that there is no doubt.

A venture out away out bye, heading onto neighbouring ground to hunt down sheep was the task in hand. Bike and I got stuck in a gateway, now that was fun! Huh! But hey, we got unstuck before the cavalry decided they needed to come and assist - yipee! Then the shepherd and I split, he one way, I the other. Within seconds Shep was stuck again. Aargh!.......

Out of sight of the cavalry and literally just yards from our point of parting I had to cut through a mini burn/slack/drain, what ever you fancy calling it. Basically bike and I had to drop down cross a couple of feet of running water and rise back out. I managed the drop down bit, bike wasn't to keen on the rising back out the other side, maybe due to that over cautiousness I am so capable of. Reverse was hit, the arse end of the bike rose back out of the water, forward gear engaged, more revs and off we would go. Or at least that was the idea.

Sure enough with plenty of revs we managed to cross the water and the front end of the bike rose up onto the banking.......... then we ground to a halt. Front wheels in mid air, rear wheels splashing in water and making no purchase - yipee! (That isn't what I uttered - honest!) Much pushing, grunting and cursing later I had somehow managed to dislodge the bike and ended up at a most peculiar angle in the water, the angle became increasingly peculiar as I attempted to reverse out of the situation which found me dismounted and trying desperately to keep all four wheels and two feet on terra firma, which involved even further cursing. Luck was with us, knees knocking, bike and I got extricated and we headed on our way. Albeit a totally different route than the one I was intended to take.

The different route had me stumble upon some sheep, which may well have been overlooked on the intended route - how lucky was that?

I didn't make the intended rendezvous on time - what a surprise! But not to worry, sheep were in sight and followed on, whilst the shepherd headed further out onto neighbouring ground.
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I couldn't help but stop and photograph this cairn, t'was the pointy top stone that caught my eye, it appealed to me and so a quick shot before I continued on my journey. Could it have been at this point that I had lost sight of five sheep?

I headed out in the quest of catching up with those I had chased on when I was making my detour earlier in the proceedings but found I had to stop out on the top to take these shots
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The view to my left (east)took in the Cheviots.
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Behind me I had the Scottish hills
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On my right was Kielder reservoir
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and finally, in front of me the view down the valley towards home.

The photos don't seem to show just how clear the day was but then they were taken in a hurry before I resumed my quest to find sheep.

I headed in the direction of where the sheep ought to have gone, could not see them and turned back to be sure they hadn't stood still or slunk back to whence they'd come. Upon returning in the direction of where I'd expected them to be I noticed the other bike and some signalling. Sure enough the sheep had been cornered. Now I could have been sulky when the greeting I received was "You need to go to spec savers, these were just ten yards in front of you when you turned back and you went past five further back there" Instead I just grinned and thought how lucky it was that the other bike was coming from a different angle and had caught sight of the wayward sheep - nowt to do with my eyesight at all!

And so it was then that Friday the 13th proved to be anything but unlucky, the unluckiest part of the day would be the fact I had to travel on that particular neighbouring ground, a task I really don't relish but one which I survived. The day commenced with a beautiful sunrise and closed with an equally pleasant sunset - what more could you ask for?