I noticed a leech first when I bent down to tie one of my shoelaces. I wagered that there was sufficient time to tie the knot before it reached me. I was just right and headed off quickly down the track. Walking, leeches have plenty time to get hold. Running, they have much less chance. There is a lack of coherent heat to summon their inexorable attention. Approaching my car, grappling for my keys, I recognised another leech cowering on my sock just above the shoe. I was surprised that it had not made the short climb to my leg. It seemed confused by the lack of sustenance. I pulled it off and it stuck to the end of my thumb like a small, flexible and frenetically waving additional finger. A final flick dislodged it. I removed my shoes and socks and placed them on the floor on the opposite side of the car. I washed my shoes with the hose when I got home. Drying on the rear doorstep, they look quite clean and unflustered now.

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