Sometimes we do something or visit somewhere and it is fairly straightforward to write about it; travelogue style pieces that essentially say we went here and saw that. However occasionally we do or see something that provokes a deeper response in me and I then find it quite hard to think about how to write about it to the extent that I wonder whether I should or not. That is because my response will mean that I have to share something about myself and my feelings and opinions with the “world” that I may not think is entirely politic. Even writing this paragraph falls into that category and leads me to ponder what exactly is the purpose of the blog and why I am writing it. When I am “stuck” over a post in this way I always know as I will often start it and then scrap it; write the first paragraph and decide it is not right; give it one title and then change it and sometimes abandon it altogether. All of this except the abandoning have been true of this post.
During our travels in Britain in 2014 we visited Lyme Regis on Dorset’s “Jurassic Coast”, which is famous, among other things, for being the a long time place of residence for John Fowles and where he wrote The French Lieutenant’s Woman. It also furnished one of the most memorable locations for the film of the book, the Cobb that creates its harbour, which also features in Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Much more important though was its economic value to the town as the cobb enabled it to become an important harbour and shipbuilding centre. We remembered this as we encountered a number of small coastal towns and villages on our recent jaunt around Devon and Cornwall and were surprised and delighted by the variety of harbours, sea-defences, cobbs and sea-gates.
We have been successfully motoring around Britain for the last 15 months under the faithful guidance of our TomTom SatNav without which we would have been quite lost. It is very reassuring to know that when you enter a destination – and here in the UK just a postcode is all you need – that TomTom will take you there, even if, sometimes, it can be a bit of a magical mystery tour as it takes you diving off onto single track country lanes from which one wonders if one will ever emerge. Up until very recently the answer has always been, yes, despite seemingly impossible burrowings into the English countryside.