The first was the River Lemon, at Newton Abbot, Devon, which I know from my childhood days. There had been an unfortunate incident when a dog had fallen into the flooded river and its owner had gone in to rescue it and had drowned. As seems usual in such very sad cases, the dog succeeded in climbing out further down stream. The problem is that in such situations there are a number of possible outcomes and people are bad at weighing up the risk, particularly when the desired outcome is highly probable but one of the unwanted outcomes is highly undesirable, as in this case.
The other river mention made me realise that I am also bad at accessing risks when there is a very high cost of making the wrong decision compared with the possible benefit of being right.
In my journey home I crossed the River Mole, which runs between Bookham and Leatherhead.
|Flood Warning Area 25th December|
Of course things worked out as planned - but if things had gone wrong and the car had stalled the problems, with two old age pensioners have to abandon the car could have been at best very traumatic, especially as I now know that the river levels were still rising... OK - this time my luck held - but at my age (and with an elderly passenger) I need to to consider the costs of being in error more carefully.