Thursday, 18 August 2011


Is there anything better than strolling along a sandy beach at the water's edge on a sweltering day? It soothes the soul, and allows the brain to have a word with itself. I indulged in that sensation when we stopped on the Belgian coast before heading back to dear old Blighty. We were so dedicated to tracing the British coastline during our first two years in the Airstream, so I'm flummoxed that we have rarely dipped or paddled since.

Highlight of our first trip across the pond with the Airstream? Making lovely new friends, by far. We were overwhelmed by the hospitality of Dutch Airstreamers, Axel and Annieta, who let us stay in their 'yard' for so long that I virtually lost track of time. In fact, we met a lot of really friendly people while we were away. And spending time in Drenthe was incredibly pleasant. I think the far away horizon has a profoundly settling effect on my state of mind.

Where are we now? Not telling; we're lying low and prepping for Rockhill Rendezvous, the next UKAirstreamers' Gathering which is only three weeks away! But we are 'back home', and it's raining.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Inspiring Travel Writing

I have done a fair bit of reading during the summer so far, but the most inspiring by far has been this little Penguin travel book, part of their Great Journeys series. Adventures in the Rocky Mountains by Isabella Bird is a collection of letters by the adventurous traveller to her sister. But this is letter writing which I am convinced is no longer practised. Her letters read like prose, and her descriptions are beautifully evocative.

In 1873 Isabella Bird travelled alone to Colorado, encountering rough and wild characters, grizzly bears and stunning, but often inhospitable landscapes.

She is told, "There's nothing Western folk admire so much as pluck in a woman..." and she is shown respect by the most lawless of settlers. Plus, she knitted! "- my usual resource under discouraging circumstances."