I go for a run.
Run! Run! Run!
Up past the village shop and down the green lane (where there has been a recent episode of dog shit).
My breathing isn’t too good, and it’s cold. A sea fret is forming about me.
A ‘sea fret’ is the local name for the thick fogs that occasionally sweep in off the North Sea. They can be pretty spectacular, sometimes arriving at an incredible speed – literally billowing, like smoke.
You will often find that different regions have special local names for fog. There is a very good reason for this – ‘a sea fret’ sounds infinitely more scary and sinister than just ‘some fog’. It’s a way of intimidating the townies.
I run on. It is like being a character in a James Herbert horror story. (The Fog).
This is a bit worrying. I do not wish to turn into a gibbering homicidal maniac, especially just before Christmas.
I already have a bit of a headache and a runny nose from the cold. In fact I feel a bit weird. The thing is, with the sea fret being like the horrific-makes-you-go-mad fog in the James Herbert book, I am very concerned about the placebo effect.
I am worried that I will end up being mysteriously compelled to expose myself in the village shop before murdering the LTLP and Short Tony. And then, just when I’m standing there covered in blood and dribbling, and wondering who to murder next, the police would turn up and explain that it wasn’t a sinister chemical nerve agent James Herbert fog after all, but a simple sea fret. And I will look sheepish, and feel like a bit of a fool, and at the very least I will have to write a letter of apology to the Village Shop Lady.
The air is clearer as I huff past the church, past Big A’s place with his newly-installed exterior Christmas lights and back home.
I feel out of breath. But I think I am OK this time.