This Sunday saw me, Mrs D-S-D and Rhiannon trailing just south of Tebay to do a fell race in the Howgills, and YET AGAIN I had been misled!
This race had been previously described to me by Rhiannon as 'the loveliest route out of all of them' and ' a lovely run, along one side of the valley, then back down the other side'.
I don't know what sort of a world she lives in, but it must be one where horizontal and vertical mean altogether different things, because as the race actually went straight up a hill, then up a bit further to the top, then back down the hill again - the most 'fell racy' race of the lot so far, no chance for the 'road runner' to use his pace over more or less level ground to gain lost time on the uphill trudge...so no run along the valley stuff, indeed no sign of a valley anywhere on the route, unless she meant the gorge near the end where you fall down into a beck then have to drag yourself up the other side!
Anyway, things got off to a bad start with Mrs D-S-D becoming stressed at the venue due to parking difficulties involving a hesitant (lady) driver not knowing what to do about leaving/staying, making Mrs D-S_D take a 3 mile detour along single track roads, returning with a whole new vocabulary of swear words.
The race was simply UP then DOWN, in biting cold winds, with a hidden obstacle drainage ditch which caught me out 100 metres before the finish, leading to a comedy fall/slide along the wet rushes, which meant at that point I was probably moving faster than at any other time in the race!
The still stressed Mrs D-S-D had also taken a tumble on the fells, and the trouble continued as we walked back to the car.
A lady was riding her bicycle along the road, and as she came up behind us she started shouting 'Bike Bike! Look out for me and my Bike'. Mrs D-S-D rose to the bait shouting 'Pedestrians, Pedestrians ! The roads for ******* pedestrians too!
As the lady pedalled off to Tebay we hatched a plan to catch up with her, lean out the car window and push her off the bike, give her a good sort out, with one smack for nearly knocking us over ( Yes, I'm still sensitive about being knocked over in Penrith too) and another one 'just for anything else we can think of'!
We didn't !
The Fell Fella