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A walk in Coombe Abbey

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On Saturday we decided, for the first time in 12 weeks to go out to a public park for a walk. We’ve been out in the local lanes and fields surrounding the house, but living relatively rurally have been fortunate enough not to need to encounter other people; at least, not without being able to maintain a good social distance. Saturday was different. Firstly we drove to our destination of choice. Having not been there for many years my memory was of a reasonably quiet Tudor house and grounds with free parking. The parking’s not free anymore, although there were attendants at the barriers handling the ticket machine so I didn’t have to, but it’s ticket to enter and hard earned mullah to exit, paid via contactless terminals. Having entered the car park and parked bonnet out under a tree; I don’t like to park nose in ever since my time in motorsport where even the parking is done properly. There’s a saying in motorsport; “don’t be a nosey parker“. I adopt it most places including with all of the cars at home which are always reversed onto the drive. I digress. Anyway. People. Urgh. Lockdown has shone a light on and magnified my distain for people. Most are ok, but there are the thick inconsiderate ones that don’t seem to be able to comprehend the concept of social distancing, or who have their dog on a lead so long that the entire path is obstructed, or the amblers, who have no concept of time and who think it reasonable to take 10 minutes to walk across 30 yards of stone bridge less than two meters wide and that everyone behind them will think this is normal and stay calm. Suffice to say “Her Indoors” heart rate monitor failed to dip below 100bpm on our leisurely stroll out of the house for the first time in three months. So that was nice.

Seriously though, despite the (kind of) tongue in cheek comments above, we did enjoy getting out and did feel we had a glimpse of what normality might look like weeks from now. God alone knows how it’ll feel to get to a motor racing circuit and smell the sweet nectar of fuel exhaust accompanying the roar of engines. I can dream…

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