When younger, Bro walked long distances, Land's
End to John O' Groats, the Bay of Biscay to the
Mediterranean via the Pyrenees. Sustained himself
with pots of tea and cakes. the cock-eyed hat is deliberate
Brother Sir Hugh is suffering from an unspecified lurgi. He lives 200 miles away and we hadn’t seen him face to face for several years. Why not pay him a comfort visit? On the return drive VR noted: He tended us more than we tended him. Competitive ill-health, you might say.
We invented a couple of reasons for driving round the adjacent Lake District. This included the voie sans issue road to the end of Haweswater (a lake) which probably sounds like bad planning. Not so. Going, we were against the sun, coming back, the light shone from behind. The same road could have been two separate routes in different counties.
But the abiding impression of this two-night visit was the intensity of the conversation. Normally talk quality depends on the subject matter but not this time. When speaking to a family member one has known for eighty years, the need for explanations, background stuff, dubious nostalgia and preferences disappears. What’s left is new, revelatory and shot through with enthusiasm. Getting rid of the material that dilutes and – thereby – slows the conversational pace is highly advantageous. The sentences are more likely to parse.
Brother Sir Hugh lives in Arnside, a precipitous village overlooking the wide estuary of the river Kent where it spills out into Morecambe Bay and eventually the Irish Sea. A backdrop of lowish hills acts as prelude to the Lake District’s higher and better known peaks (Scafell Pike, Great Gable, Helvellyn, etc).
A place that’s good to look at but something of a menace close-up. Viz:
|Arnside: Self-explanatory, really|