Yetis and UFO lark with Nazi troopers got up as nuns...

THE Yeti, abominable snowman, Big Yahoo is about again, it says in the papers. Siberia this time, apparently. Nothing as positive as that old fuzzy snap of something doing a runner into the woods, or those ones of what might be gigantic footprints in the

THE Yeti, abominable snowman, Big Yahoo is about again, it says in the papers. Siberia this time, apparently.

Nothing as positive as that old fuzzy snap of something doing a runner into the woods, or those ones of what might be gigantic footprints in the snow.

But claimed sightings nonetheless.

Of course, you'd need to know a deal about whoever says they saw Big Foot.


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There are those in that part of the world who, after a session on the vodka, regularly see all manner of fantastic things, and for whom a mere Yeti would be commonplace.

Experience has taught old hacks like me that life, let alone truth, can be well stranger than fiction.

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For credibility, however, Yetis must rank with UFOs, crop circles, and monsters lurking in lakes the world over, not just Loch Ness.

All inspire a rare lot of talk, and no small genuine research, without so far a single bit of evidence that would stand up in court.

What is pretty certain is that we'd all like such mysteries to have substance, while not being exposed to reality's possibly deflating glare.

Our penchant for the incredible has much to answer for plus a certain level of gullibility.

You can ask around the Loch Ness locals in vain for somebody who has seen the monster. Do they themselves believe in it?

Well, mebbe - Nessie being good business.

Once, deep in Sweden's Arctic Circle, I asked phlegmatic guide Langen if the Yeti fable operated there.

Answering I could sit out that night guarding against a Yeti raid on the supplies' sledge if I liked, Langen added drily: "There's people who will believe anything"

"Like Stan Bowles didn't like a bet?" I quipped, which QPR fan Langen appreciated.

While we mostly get over the Santa myth, we resent our grown-up fantasies being messed with.

My own relationship with some Recorder folk was never the same after I thoughtlessly chipped a lump off one they nursed.

Sour after a fruitless morning covering Stratford Court, I was in no mood to find the Recorder offices doing a Marie Celeste act.

Editorial, advertising, accounts - all deserted.

The whole crew I located were grouped outside on the open bridge to the works, staring skywards, including editor Basil Amps with hand shading his eyes.

High above was a circular silver object, seemingly stationary.

After two RAF years, one glance told me what it was, especially after seeing our station's met boys release such balloons every morning outside our section, amid much ribaldry from us.

So, without thinking I grumpily growled: "It's a flipping met balloon, for God's sake. What did you hope it was?"

The looks some shot at me said just what as they trooped back in after the brutally summary dismissal of something they badly wanted personal proof of.

In the early days of the war, Colin Horne and me kidded class-mates a German agent was operating from our village school's stoke-hole.

Spy-mania was at its height then (Nazi paratroopers got up as nuns, etc) and our outrageous fib went in conditioned ears.

After several tense dinner hours the story ran out of steam, and we had to tell them Funf and his transmitter had done a bunk.

They were badly miffed about it.

What beats me with the Yeti and such larks is why no defining proof is ever obtained.

After what Sir David Attenborough comes up with via's today's technology, it ought to be a walk in the park to catch one of them with their pants down, if only figuratively.

But that wouldn't go for the Roman Legion private once observed marching smartly through a basement wall in York, by a painter up a ladder putting a coat on the same wall - a teetoller to boot.

So if, some day, viewing includes An Everyday Story of Yeti Folk, we'll not run out of other such bafflers to occupy us.

It could also be that when the Roman soldier is himself eventually hauled across the centuries for an interview on the telly, he will reveal he was part of a platoon northbound ... on the regular Yeti patrol.

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