Do you ever get the feeling that something is not quite right? An omen? Well, I got that feeling last week as I returned from a regular visit to my parents in Lancashire. As my newly-road-qualified daughter accelerated onto the M65 motorway, I saw a dark plume on the horizon. As we progressed through through the time warp back to Yorkshire, the plume got larger and larger, until it filled the view from the front seats, where I sat with white knuckles.
Uncharacteristically optimistic for me, I decided that there was little chance of two dramatic crashes on the M65 in one day, and so my mood lifted momentarily. Strangely, although the plume was getting bigger and bigger, it didn’t seem to be getting any nearer. The last time this happened, I was driving towards Leeds on the M62 motorway, when, for a few seconds, I really thought that aliens had arrived, until I was close enough to recognise a giant Lurpak man sat on a huge floating pack of butter.
Eventually, 20 miles later, we passed the fire, which appeared to be somewhere in a Nelson industrial estate, and was not a motorway pile-up. I could feel the knuckles tightening again.