By: Blonde Two
I get teased a lot about my lack of ability to navigate when I am driving the car down Devon’s lanes (or indeed, its really big roads). Former embarrassing mistakes have included losing a whole Rescue Centre and a wasted hour circumnavigating the roundabouts of Exeter. I had a (much smaller) but similar issue walking round some lanes on our Saturday Snowdrop Hunt. As you can imagine, this is a particularly ridiculous situation for someone who can find a 5cm cross on a very dark Dartmoor to find herself in. Something has to be done, so I have been examining the issue (as only a Blonde can). I have come to a couple of conclusions and their possible solutions;1. Roads can be very badly behaved. They have a kind of magnetic “keep-on-walking” effect which encourages a Blonde to forget about counting paces or checking time. The answer to this problem is clearly to wear a blindfold. In the dark, you wouldn’t see the road ahead so it couldn’t tempt you forwards.
2. The Dartmoor pixies have modern cousins who have left the moor and work their dark magic on the lanes. They can lull the unsuspecting Blonde into a false sense of security. They whisper, “Walk this way, all is well, I will take you there.” The Blonde follows without a thought for what she is doing and finds that she has walked in a circle back to where she came from. The solution for this is obvious – make sure that, even when you are walking on the lanes, you leave a present for the little folk.
3. Snowdrop hunting is distracting. When you spend most of the walk poking in undergrowth or peering over people’s fences, it is easy to forget that you have a directional goal as well as a botanical one. The next garden fence or old oak tree might just the one that is hiding that elusive Galanthus Green Tear (worth lots of money). The answer to this would be to allocated clear roles to each member of the party. For example, a party of three could have one navigator, one botanist and one peace-keeper for when there is a clash of goals (when you share a gene pool, this is bound to happen!)