11 October 2016

One year of love

If it's October, it must be time for another intellectual property training course ... so here I am having delivered the first half of the course, preparing myself for day 2, staying the night in a hotel room large enough to hold a sizeable party - so big that something feels as if it's missing - having taken a very enjoyable and rather nostalgic run to and around (only the Inner Circle) Regent's Park. My running restart programme is going well: I clocked about three-and-a-quarter miles this evening, and "lost" another mile or so while Garmin tried to find a satellite, so I reckon I did well over four miles in total. It loosened up my plantar fascia quite nicely, but the soreness is still persisting.

I'm sure that a few years ago, when I was commuting between Paddington and RIBA, I ran through Regent's Park in the evening, after dark. I remember the strange sounds that emanated from the zoo as I ran past. Tonight the gates were firmly closed, so I was confined to the roads - probably just as well, as it was dark enough to make street lights necessary. And I guess heading home from RIBA was never very late: one evening there I caused consternation by asking to be let back into my office at some unearthly hour like 8 o'clock. Too many years spent working in law firms whose offices were accessible 24 hours a day!

I had to postpone my second Tuesday at Nottingham Law School because of my prior commitment to CLT, but was due to take one seminar yesterday. The prospect of a trip of nearly three hours there, and back again only an hour later, didn't exactly thrill me but was manageable, and part of the price of having such a great part-time job. But at the time I was supposed to be starting the seminar I was in a traffic jam on the M1, where I had been for two hours before that: so Monday was also postponed to next week, when I will have an intense couple of days (and so, unfortunately, will the students). At least I was able to catch up on some phone calls from the stationary car.

At one point during my sojourn on the motorway I became aware that I could hear a cock crowing. Then I noticed I could hear more. I realised that I was alongside an artic piled high with unfortunate poultry in stacked-up cages. The curtain sides of the trailer were closed, but sufficiently transparent (I suppose to allow ventilation) to see some movement and to make out feathers. It upset me greatly to think of the distressed animals, no doubt baffled about what was going on (or, in a traffic jam, not going on) and unaware that they were probably heading for an unpleasant fate. Not that I imagine their lives were very pleasant anyway. When the traffic moved a few yards and I was able to get away from this neighbour it was a big relief. I wonder whether, if I'd not been able to get away, I'd have been able to resist the urge to get out of the car and liberate some of them: but when the thought crossed my mind I could see that any newly-freed chickens would probably get no further than the free-moving southbound carriageway and become roadkill.

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