My little adventure in Brighton (see yesterday's blog, 'Almost a night on a bear mountain), where I narrowly avoided a night of bare mounting due to my uncanny resemblance to gay icons such as George Clooney (when I'm dressed in a wet anorak and seen from a distance in the dark), showed me how threatened attractive women must often feel when they walk alone in deserted streets.
My protagonist readily accepted my courteous refusal of his kind proposal, aided no doubt by my 6ft.4in. of bone and muscle and a really ugly scowl, but a petite female in similar circumstances might not be so lucky.
I suppose girls get used to it and have a number of ploys at their disposal. I was very impressed by a true story I heard when I was attending a medical conference in Cairo. One of the delegates was a small but perfectly formed lady doctor who was walking alone along the banks of the Nile, when she was accosted by a large Arab, who parted his djellaba in classic 'dirty grey raincoat' style to reveal his true intentions. Annie simply opened her handbag, fished out her reading specs, put them on, peered closely and then said disdainfully 'And is that the best you can do?'
Fortunately his English was good enough for him to feel totally humiliated and he fled.
Unlike the wee virgin who was once carrying a basket of eggs home from the market when she met the adventurer-poet Robert Burns on a lonely mountain path in the Scottish Highlands. She recognized him immediately from his manly swagger and his beautiful jaunty sporran. 'Are ye the famous Rabbie Burns?' she asked in some trepidation. 'Aye, I am that lassie' came the proud reply. 'Oh dear' she said breathlessly 'And are ye the terrible man they say y'are, that goes round the country seducing young women and then having his wicked way with them no matter how much they resist and call for help'. 'Aye, well it has been known to happen in the heat of the moment'. 'Och, ye wicked man, ye'd best just wait a second while I find a safe place to put down my basket'.