Hartside in the Eden Valley was one of the first places our daughter took my wife and I to view when visiting her in the the Lakes a few years ago. She was disappointed that although the views were wonderful, they would be better seen on a clearer day. A second visit has, since then, been on my list of must do’s.
I decided that before age dictated my means of transport, I would follow the example normally set by my daughter and make the arduous journey from Stainton by BIKE.
After resurrecting, cleaning and oiling the bike, which was thought by some to be a family heirloom, the journey began. I quickly left the busy streets and roads of Penrith and hit the country roads. Head down, sweating profusely, I forged onwards and upwards. Without warning a fox darted across my path, I swerved, lost control, left the tarmac and ended up bloody and wounded in a deep ditch at the side of the lane.
I managed to climb back to the road, staggering dizzily, but staying on my feet. Time wasn’t resonating and as if in a mirage, a red BMW drop head coupe pulled up alongside me. The driver was a very attractive woman with a dark flow of hair, wearing a half-buttoned blouse. She asked what had happened and if she could help.
Having explained about the fox and the ditch, she shouted ‘get in the car, I live not far from here, I can bathe and dress your forehead and get you some help.’ ‘Oh, no!’ I replied, staring at the half-buttoned blouse, ‘I don’t think my wife would approve.’ ‘Don’t be silly,’ she replied, ‘surely your wife would want you to get help’ – after which I climbed into the front passenger seat.
Her home was at the end of about a five mile journey, during which I noticed she undid more buttons on her blouse, exposing more of the soft skin of her breasts and arousing a long subdued feeling in my loins.
Half an hour and three cold lagers later, my forehead cleaned and treated, she suggested I take off my shirt and even perhaps my trousers to see if there were any other injuries requiring attention. ‘Oh, no,’ I retorted, ‘my wife certainly would not approve of that.’ ‘Why ever not,’ she replied, ‘and in any case, you don’t have to tell her, do you? And by the way, where is your wife?’
‘Still in the ditch with the tandem, I suppose,’ I replied.