I promised myself that in the interests of not being a total prat (secondary aspect: offending Jules unnecessarily – granted, sometimes it is necessary), I would not bag out the old dart.
Do you, dear reader know how hard that restraint is ? Well, let me say at the outset that our friends the Brits and Irish are doing a good job getting their act together. Having said that,from the NSW perspective, the public utilities bar is not very high above terra firma.
But there’s still a fair modicum of dysfunctional plumbing in the accommodation (the places I can afford) – masquerading as “quaint”. More surprising is the total absence of soap in the rooms.
I DO want to say how hospitable the natives have been towards we from the colons of the earth. Sorry, typo. The colonies.
And the internet is struggling to find its way through British Telecom, Orange, O2 and Vodaphone networks. How does a casual rate of $20 a day with infuriatingly slow speed sound ? So the slow speed means more time online – which kills the battery on this thing. Hard to stay in touch. Two villages in which I stayed had no mobile coverage and hence no wirelss intnernet either.
But they are beautiful to behold. Last night I had dinner in a time warp pub called the “Rest and Be Thankful” at Wheddon Cross in the middle of the Exmoor National Park. And stayed at the Forester’s Arms in Dunster. After four or so pints of Guinness, the lack of soap in the room didn’t seem to matter all that much, but the increasing attrctiveness of the publican (who was drinking two for each of mine – that’s right six pints when I lost count) was alarming and so I retired to a night of many small trips to the celebrate the effectiveness of my kidneys.
So what about the shirthouse experience ?
Well, the first mate is a fashionista and insisted that I wander down the Dover Street when through London I passed (near Green Square). This is the stamping ground of Comme De Garcon, Anne Demuellemeister and others she adores. I was instructed to have a look and see what stirred the soul enogh to lay waste to the credit card. I found a truly fantastic T-shirt for $500, and a workable business shirt – also for $500. I have to stress that they really were superb with luxurious fabrics and innnovative and interesting designs. And how pissed off was I that they didn’t have XL sizes let alone XXL.
I was so miffed that I was relieved to get out of there with a tie that cost the equivalent of thirty pints of Guinness.