Odd experience at Haldon (Exeter)

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  • Odd experience at Haldon (Exeter)
  • thinksta

    The other night I was out for a ride at Haldon, probably around 8:30pm – dark and wet, but not raining. Half way through the red run where it meets the road (by grumpy man’s gate) a guy (aged 20-30) on a scooter (that sounded like a mosquito) stopped and waved me over (keeping his engine on).

    He said that he was running out of petrol, he didn’t live nearby, his phone had run out of battery but his mate had told him there was a shell garage nearby. I know there isn’t a shell garage anywhere near, but there is a texaco not far away, and I told him how to get there – not difficult. He said he would “break down” before getting back to the main road and insisted that I get my phone out to show him how to get to the shell petrol station.

    I was getting a bad vibe about the situation, imagining him grabbing my phone and scooting off the moment I took it out. I made no move to get my phone out, and told him I couldn’t help him any more – I repeated the directions to the station and rode off.

    When I got back to my car 20 minutes later he rode past me, not stopping this time, although I was feeling a bit intimidated being alone in the dark, etc.

    It’s possible he was a genuine fellow in distress, and if so I feel bad for not hanging with him to see him through, but it feels more likely he was opportunistically up to no good.

    I thought I’d share the experience as a warning just in case anyone else has a similar situation, and if I did mis-judge the situation then if anyone happens to know this chap then please pass on my apologies!

    Premier Icon joat

    He was after your phone. End of.


    I think your gut feeling was right!


    Definitely after your phone. If it feels dodgy, it probably is dodgy.


    There’s a Shell garage at the bottom of the hill – but the Texaco is closer and the Esso by the diner closer still 🙂

    At least he wasn’t in leather fetish gear…

    Premier Icon burko73

    Sounds dodgy but also sounds a bit rural for that sort of thing. Let the rangers know at the visitor centre if I was you.

    Premier Icon jam bo

    If I was going out robbing phones, I can think of richer pickings than Haldon on a mid-week evening in the winter…

    The Esso by the diner now has a Gregs too and essentially sells everything known to man, would def have recommended that over the Shell

    Probably checking out your dogging credentials.


    Ooh – forgot the shell at the bottom of the hill!

    It did seem odd, and it’s possible I was partly weirded out because it was so quiet about and you feel a bit vulnerable alone in the dark when someone’s behaviours don’t quite match what they’re saying and they’re doing all the things that someone who was going to nick your phone would do….

    Premier Icon roverpig

    Is it worth nicking mobile phones these days? I thought that even the security services had trouble breaking into them. Or is that just for accessing data?

    Nah mate. Devon Social Services have a rubber stamp with the letters “N.F.H” on it. That situation was entirely “Normal for Haldon.”

    The thing that put the shits up me one night at Haldon was, as I was doing the fire-road climb from the top of the Black I happened upon a car with a hastily scribbled sign in the window which read “Punish me…. make me like it.” The big guy carrying a length of bamboo and using it on some half-naked fat bloke sprawled across the car bonnet looked well scary.

    I got outa there as fast as I could!

    Premier Icon tjmoore

    There is the “travellers” camp down the road.

    Premier Icon kimbers


    Is it worth nicking mobile phones these days? I thought that even the security services had trouble breaking into them. Or is that just for accessing data?

    There’s vids on YouTube showing you how to hack stolen iPhones

    It’s a service that dodgy phone repair shops will do too

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