“Honey?” I said to myself at about 10pm when I heard a knock at the tent,”Would you me a love and answer that? Don’t forget to take off your night time attire, you know how…?”
“Hello?” said the deep voice momentarily breaking me from my ‘Gone with the wind’ moment.
I took off my nightcap – some people might call it a balaclava – just as I unzipped the tent door to smile benignly into the face of the nice man from the terrorist police.
I was aware that I had been a little cheeky in my choice of campsite, in that I’d plonked myself down on a beautifully manicured piece of turf just next to the sign that bore the timeless legend “Forrs Business Park”.
With this in mind I tentatively played my first card, “Right to Roam?”
That wonderful piece of Scots law that says, effectively, there’s no such thing as trespass, only criminal damage, should it occur.
“Ah, well…” the nice man, dressed in black, started back.
Before he could finish I played my second card,”Your local police colleagues actually waved at me while I was putting my tent up,”
“They did?” he smiled
“Do you know how close you are to Dounreay?”
He was referring to the UK’s first nuclear reactor which was now in the process of being decommissioned.
I thought back to my slow, leisurely day. It had been hot so in true Huckleberry Finn style I had rolled my mat down a slept for a couple of hours in a field – this meant I couldn’t have walked far. This meant I must be at least 3 miles from the site…
“It’s just there, over the brow of that hill. You’re about a mile away.”
“I’m walking around the edge of the UK highlighting the experiences of people with mental health problems and other marginalised groups…”
My final card.
With that, friendly terrorist policeman number 2 was asked to go and check my credentials on “The Computer”.
Friendly terrorist policeman who remained got the full broadside of the story so far and about Walk a Mile.
In return, he told me that where there were usually no suspicious folk near the plant at this time of night – there was me and a guy parked up the road in his car.
I’m not sure what the protocol should be when they can’t find any details about someone on the computer, even with the production of my driving licence.
“Do you do the Facebook thing?” I chirped up,”You could follow me on my group…”
“Well, I guess if the other nuclear sites knew you were coming you’d be less of a threat…”
And so it was agreed – instead of locking me up and throwing away the key, they both agreed to look me up on Facebook with the plan to join our merry band.
On reflection I’m glad I didn’t greet them wearing my balaclava – on reflection, I’m glad they missed me cooking my supernoodles where my petrol stove looked slightly out of control because of the wind.
All’s well that ends…
Walk a mile
26/07/11 So you want to hear about Thurso ?