Wednesday 19 October 2016

Running up that hill...

 A cow was bawling incessantly when I ran up to the Castle this morning while it was still dark.  As I gingerly eased by it seemed more interested in something happening under the hedge. Straining my eyes I noticed a calf laid on the ground with someone knelt by the side of it, apparently trying to revive it. "Will it be alright?" I asked. "Yeah, it's fine" the girl replied.
Angry dawn     (Click pictures to enlarge)
      After a few laps round the hill I returned in breaking light. The cow was still bawling. There was no sign of the calf or the girl.  I doubted whether it had survived. When I stopped to take a picture of an angry breaking dawn the distressed mother came chasing after me. I'm not sure what was going through her mind, whether anger or a cry for help, but felt sorry there was nothing I could do - except run.  Fast!
Calving time and the population has already doubled
      And talking of running fast, I reckon the effects of that Triamcinolone injection is still kicking in. I mentioned it to the Consultant who told me Sir Bradley Wiggins had been given an intramuscular injection of 40mgs. That would slow the onset of fatigue for the duration of the Tour de France.  I only had 4mgs but am still running easily after two weeks and actually managed an 8 minute/mile a few days ago.
Not bad in my dotage.
Warming up for that 8 minute/mile
      Autumn tints are coming to their brightest and best, especially under blue skies with sunlight upon them, or when reflected in the calm waters of the River Wharfe at Hebden.  A real feast for the eyes before the onset of winter winds and Jack Frost.
Autumn tints reflected in the River Wharfe
      Trees were ladened with berries on our route round Grimwith reservoir.  A few greylags bugled across the water. Mallard were feeding in the shallows.
Bracken turning russet back o' Grimwith
      A lone yachtsman was pursued by a man with an outboard and told to clear off out of it as sailing was not permitted that day. Water was exceedingly low for the time of year.
Striding out round Grimwith
      A South Devon bull (?) sporting a ton of beef and ring in his nose ambled along the road with two pregnant wives in tow. He glared at us as we passed. We could read his mind.
"Hey, I'm king around here, nobody messes with me".
A lot of steaks...
      Halloween is not my favourite event of the year (and 'trick or treat' should have stayed the other side of the pond) but Hebden's Old School Tearoom was suitably decked out with pumpkins and lanterns in a colourful display when I passed the other day.
Turning leaves by The Old School Tearoom
      Besides passing car trade the tearoom is a haven for weekend cyclists who stop by for refreshments before the long trek home. A cosy bed and scrumptious breakfast is available for those who decide it's too good a place to leave.  Friendly and highly recommended.
Halloween display outside the tearoom.
      With changing winds and temperatures it's getting difficult to decide which running gear to wear at this time of year.  I like to wear shorts for as long as possible, my legs can bear the cold quite well, but for early morning runs I've recently reverted to long, or tight, shorts.  As winter progresses, a jacket, tights, woolly hat, gloves and maybe Yaktrax will have to be dragged out of hibernation.
Autumn tints by Hebden Suspension Bridge
      Or maybe it would be more sensible to leave all those things where they are and go into hibernation myself!

Postscript: A day later. The same cow came trundling towards me as I crossed the field again this morning. But she wasn't interested in me, she was heading to where a calf was quietly bawling under the hedge. So I guess the girl had taken the calf away yesterday to maybe revive it under a heat lamp, then brought it back.
A happy ending.


  1. Oh poor cow. Sad.
    I'm no fan of Halloween either!

    1. There was a happy ending Karen, see my postscript...

  2. I'll Age rate that 8:00 minute mile for you... At age 25 it is 4:26. I'm 52 which comes out at 5:06 (I wish). Of course on this occasion you would fail a drugs test!

    1. But at 55 I ran 4.05 - without drugs....
      Sorry, just checked, I was 58

  3. Don't those Autumn tints reflected in the River Wharfe look wonderful.
    So pleased there was a happy ending with the cow.

    All the best Jan

    1. Every year we walk down the river bank to marvel at those colours Jan. And yes, it was nice to make friends with that cow again...