Monday, July 29, 2019

Notes on cars and dogs in Cornwall

Presumably there are more dogs and cars in, say, London than Cornwall, though it never feels that way. In Cornwall, being sans voiture, I can often be seen enjoying myself cycling or walking along country paths or roads. The only thing to disturb my bucolic bliss is... yup: dogs and cars. They're both everywhere. If I'm walking on a country path, I hear dogs everywhere, I see Beware of Dog signs* on walls and fences, where guard dogs suddenly jump up and bark excessively loud at me, and finally, dog owners on a walk with their canines happily running free, usually use that freedom to run after me, bark at me and jump up on me. Finally there is the curse of the dog poop bag tied up and left on beautiful country paths all over Cornwall (and other places too, presumably, to be fair).  Let it be known: I don't like dogs.

It's the same with cars. I'll be happily cycling (or walking: I'll actually probably start off on a pavement which will completely and suddenly vanish as soon as I leave any town or village) along a quiet country road and though there might not be that much traffic, it's the sudden roaring of a car going past me – far too close – at 80mph that is somewhat terrifying. Let it be known I don't like cars either.

So, dogs and cars. As I said, there are probably plenty more in big cities, but per capita, people own more cars and dogs in Cornwall than London. And they're just so much more noticeable, perhaps because they both spoil the so-called tranquility of the countryside.

* I ignored one such sign recently on a farm, figuring just because they have a Beware of Dog sign doesn't mean they actually have a dog. There was an abandoned engine house in the corner of an overgrown field. I climbed over a fence and walked across the field. Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye I glimpsed a large animal shape nearby and thought – okay, this is it, I am going to get attacked, no way around it. I faced my fear – it turned out to be a wild deer; we were both just as scared of each other.

Previously on Barnflakes:
Notes on dog poop bags
Top ten worst inventions
Top ten dislikes

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