Measuring up trees in the wind

It was certainly a mistake to start writing about warm weather, as I did last time. Inevitably it has since turned damp, cold and extremely windy, and made the weather forecasters very happy – or at least enthusiastic.

At the top of our road men in hi-vis jackets (gilets oranges) are measuring up trees as if they intend to cut them down before the wind knocks them over. They taped off a footpath for a while, but as far as I can see nothing else has happened, which is Normal for Norfolk. They are probably waiting for the result of the Brexit vote so that things become clearer. Or they may simply have lost interest.

As has become something of a habit at this time of year, we escaped from Norfolk for a few days to reassure ourselves that roads were just as bad everywhere else, and indeed in many cases worse. No-one, after all, is building smart (aka moronic) motorways in Norfolk, where there are no motorways of any kind. Nor do we, like the otherwise relatively sane county of Derbyshire, have blanket 50mph limits, which make driving tedious and therefore more dangerous.

Buxton, our ultimate destination, remains as stunning as ever. I’m not sure why. It may have something to do with geometry, or the juxtaposition of curves. It may be the way it attracts snow (though not on this occasion), or encourages people to walk.

Coincidentally, one of my local councillors is also keen on people walking. He would like to have a car-free Sunday in our fine city of Norwich, but I’m afraid he just falls into the category of people who are really selfish – not, as Oscar Wilde pointed out, because he wants to do things his way, but because he wants everyone else to do things his way as well.

Cars are not evil. They are quite useful in carrying people and things to places where they might otherwise be unable to go. They also benefit the sick and the elderly, which can hardly be said of bicycles – especially when it’s damp, cold and windy.

I could also point out that if everyone in the UK stopped using a car tomorrow, it would have no effect on global climate whatsoever. But I won’t, because that would make me a climate change denier: any schoolchild could tell you that.