It therefore seems likely that soon, in a matter of weeks maybe, the Hamster will be back on his feet and ready to start work. The question is: will he have a show to go back to?
As I write, swarms of bureaucratic bluebottles are nibbling away at the crash site on a York airfield, desperately trying to find some reason why Top Gear should be banished from the screens.
Well, contrary to reports that he was put there by ratings-hungry producers, it was his idea. He wanted to know what it would be like to go really fast. And I know exactly why.
If he’d been interested in flowers and vegetables since a young age, he might very well now be standing in a pair of wellingtons on Gardeners’ World, talking about compost. But he isn’t interested in compost - he’s interested in speed.
Some people are born with a physical need to take risks. Steve Irwin was one. Christopher Columbus was another. And Ellen MacArthur is a classic case in point too. Telling her to stop sailing round the world is as daft as telling a black person to be white, or a blind person to look where they’re going.
But of course, we have a whole industry nowadays designed to do just that. To ensure that nobody ever falls over, that nobody ever hurts themselves, that nobody ever dies. And that if someone does, then the system must have failed and a head must roll…
How can this be a problem for anyone other than Mrs Hammond and their children? Because he crashed and tied up the emergency services? Oh come on. Are we to tell DIY enthusiasts who fall off a stepladder that no ambulance will be forthcoming because they should have called in a
professional plumber? Perhaps you might argue that Hammond is setting a bad example and that kids might try to copy him. What? In their jet cars? On their airfields?
In the last series, while attempting to build an entire car from scratch in one day, the nearly completed project fell from its stands onto the floor.
“Who’s fault was that?” I barked.
“Oh for God’s sake, how’s that going to help?” said Hammond.
He’s right. How can blaming someone help? We just need to make sure the little guy keeps getting better and that when he does, he can get back in a car, get back into Top Gear, and go 316mph.
Get well soon, Hammond. We all miss you greatly.
I'm with you Hamster, strive for speed, strive for adventure. It's the people who don't understand those feeling who are now looking to try and can your show!