thesticks

"It's going to be dark soon," warned the Webmaster. It is mid afternoon and the dogs have settled down. They have given up on the idea of a walk to day.

"I'm  coming now. That was my Dad phoning back about their website. He says their webmaster will call you later to find out what we did, and he asked if we wanted the £300. I told him 'no', we'd do it this once for free."

"Will we be OK with out the torches?"

"Should be if we just do the short route."

 We set off, it is cold and overcast.

"So it was lying, there was a later version. Once I'd copied it across on to our server I could see the log files."

"Was it what we thought, a component not supported by their old version?"

"Possibly but it was only a minor upgrade. Most likely something corrupt or missing. When I reinstalled and upgraded it fixed it. And now it's pointing to an upgrade to version 3, so that's the next thing they need to do."

We climb the stile and up the hill.

"I didn't think we could take their money just for that."

"No, but if they want us to do their upgrade to version 3 we might take it, but they need a strategy first. They are all over the place with membership management."

"They've got a fancy club management component. It looked pretty good to me."

"Yes but they do most of it off-line in a spreasheet, and they don't know about access levels and security. At least your Dad and his mate don't. Their webmaster does and it sounded as though he wanted us to tell them not to meddle. Apparently they can log in with adminsitrator rights. They need taking away."

"What did he say when you told him it was working again?"

"Who? Their webmaster? Don't know I left a message with his wife. He'll call back when he gets in."

We reach the stile with a gate. From this direction the gate is first. The Webmaster opens it and the Young Dog bounds through and over the stile taking the Webmaster by surprise. The Old Dog lumbers over carefully and slowly.

Up ahead we see a kestrel hovering and then flapping its wings as it is blown backwards. It tries again but after a few seconds of hovering it is blown back again and flies farther along the ridge.

"That kestrel is struggling in this wind."

"Must be cold up there too. 

The kestrel gives up and flies away.

"They're pleased it's fixed."

"Yeh. I think their webmaster would have got there in the end, but he doesn't have a lot of time and the other members don't realise how much effort it can be to maintain a site like that. And now we fixed it, I don't think they appreciate what he does. We couldn't have done it so easily if we hadn't had somewhere to copy it to and resinstall."

We walk across the top of the hill and down into the car park. There are a couple of cars parked and two people with large cameras set up on tripods looking out to the West. The sun is going down but it is hazy and cloudy.

"It doesn't looks as though it's going to be a good sunset, if that's what they are waiting for."

"Must be keen standing around in this cold."

We leave the car park and turn down onto the road, follow it round towards the village and then turn left along the lane. 

"How's the Twitter campaign with the right wing nutter going?" asks the Webmaster.

"Not much new, he gave up and just suggested I F off."

"What did you say?"

"Well he continued to rant and said he disdains people like me and that I am endangering the UK, so I said coming from him I'd take that as a compliment and he said 'or you could just F off'".

"Why are you endangering the UK?"

"Because I'm too naive and simplistic to realise that all refugees are either rapists or terrorists and I've been brainwashed by the liberal 'leftards' to never challenge anything."

"How can people think that? There may well be some criminals and ne'er do wells among the refugees, there will be in any population, but not the vast majority."

"I think it's because they are Muslims and he seems scared of them. He's very careful to point out he isn't racist because Islam isn't a race."

"Bit of a give away then that he thinks he might be."

"I think so. At least he isn't abusive to me. You should see some of his other Tweets."

The Young Dog suddenly turns left, leaps up the stones and over the stile. He lands in the field by the feet of one of the red and white rug clad horses. The Webmaster isn't concentrating and is yanked hard against the stones. He groans as his shoulder is strained. The Young Dog turns and looks down towards us. The Webmaster regains his balance and climbs up and over the stile. The Old Dog makes an attempt but slips back. She looks reluctant to try again. I persuade her to take a different approach to the stones and climb them like steps. She struggles up and we help her over the stile. The two horse are watching us. The Young Dog is looking nervously at the horses trying to keep his distance. 

The Webmaster's phone rings as we climb the next stile. I take both dogs and walk through to the last stile before the road. By the time I have managed to get the Old Dog under, the Young Dog and myself over it and untangle the leads, the Webmaster has caught us up.

"It was the webmaster. I explained what we did."

We walk up the road, pulling the dogs into the side when cars pass. 

"It's starting to go dark we need to hurry up."

There are no cars in the car park and the photographers have gone. The cold wind hits us again as we climb the steps onto the hill.

"Oh, come on dog, let's hurry up. Let's get back to where it's warm. It's definitely Winter now."

The phone bongs.

"Sounds like the Student. I wonder what she wants."

"Probably sending a picture of herself lounging by a pool or posing in shorts and T shirt in front of a sunrise."

"Not sure I'd like it if it was warm all the time, but I could do without this cold wind."