I’m a dowdy frumpy middled aged white lady living in a slightly dodgy area of the city. I never minded taking my two dogs for a walk in the dark but did choose to wear a hi-viz coat (which makes me even chunkier) so I could be easily seen by traffic on the busy road I need to walk down. One night in winter, I was on my way to the dog field and was walking passed the demolished site of a pub that had been closed down (due to an incident where a policewoman had been stabbed.) Spotting a car pulled up on the pavement and a man in the shadows next to the chainlink fence I paused, not sure on how to proceed. Should I try to walk past, cross the busy road or wait and see if he left anytime soon? The dogs sensed my hesitation and began to get a little anxious themselves. Berating myself for being over cautious I resumed walking slowly towards him when he turned and saw me coming.
Man: I’m sorry, I’m sorry. I’m just going.
Man: I’m sorry. I know I’m not supposed to stop here, I just….
Me (now assuming that he was relieving himself): Okaaay.
Man: I’m so sorry, I … I’m going now. I didn’t realise…
Me (trying to calm down dogs who are getting suspicious): Okaaaay.
Man: See I’m going now. (Looking down at dogs) You don’t need to…. Are you security here? I didn’t know…
Me (lightbulb moment! Hi-viz jacket): Ah! No, I’m just walking my dogs.
Man: Okay. right. Well I’m just leaving.
He jumped into his car and drove off leaving me slightly bemused and wondering what he had been up to. As I drew level to where he had been I checked the fence. No problems. When I got home I was telling my hubby about the encounter and wondering how he could have possibly thought little old me was “security”, and who was more afraid of who? My hubby dissolved into laughter and said “definitely the man” and doubling over with tears in his eyes praised our two dogs. Oh did I mention that they are two BIG German Shepherd Dogs who come up to my waist.