Yeah, well, I've been sick with a lurgy, and unable to think clearly (hmm, maybe shouldn't blame that on the lurgy). Anyway, I'm now back in harness but running to catch up with myself.
There were a ton of stories in the press last week which I thought merited our attention, but none more than the horse plaiters of West Dorset.
Yes, a mysterious series of incidents in West Dorset has seen horses across the county being found with their manes plaited overnight by unidentified persons. I kid you not.
Several theories are emerging as to the cause of this spate of 'attacks'. One is that horse thieves create the plaits during the day so when they return at night they can identify which horses to steal. Hmm. That sounds like a PC Plod hypothesis to me.
Another theory is that these plaits are part of a white magic ritual to accompany the casting of a spell. There is a sort of Castleford-Ladies'-Magical-Circle logic to this, and of course anything is possible in a place like West Dorset. But who can tell?
The most endearing theory has been voiced by Harriet Laurie of Bidport who claims that the plaiting is the result of strong winds. I think she means southwesterlies rather than anything of a digestive origin.
Personally, I would like to think this is being done by bored West Dorset folk who are breaking out of their early twenty-first century topor induced by TV dinner and soap operas, and embracing something freely, gratuitously and purposelessly creative. Is this not proof that man is still alive in West Dorset?
The mane plaiters of West Dorset; whatever next? The dustbin painters of East Sussex? The traffic warden decorators of Berkshire? The Rottweiler permers of Old London Town?
We can but live in hope.