I'm only talking about the nineteen eighties, not the 1880's, but even so, travelling back then was a different world.
In some far flung places, I can remember having to book telephone calls back to the UK and waiting in a hot and dusty office for a slot to become available. The lines were scratchy and echoey and often overlaid by other people jabbering away in a strange tongues.
Phones, pads, & gps's have revolutionised the way we travel and I can see their advantages, especially for women travelling alone, but part of me hankers for that simpler time, when self reliance was what I relied upon and we had interesting maps to tangle up, turn upside down and ponder over and perhaps, a reason to stop and ask someone the way. I found that the people I encountered formed an important part of the journey and my experiences were certainly made richer (and sometimes a bit scarier!) by them.
Bob, on the other hand, has never, to my knowledge, asked anyone the way, ever. He once travelled the whole length of France with just the front cover torn from a map for guidance. But then, I don't suppose he was too fussed where he finally pitched up - so no problemo!
Here at the cabin in deepest Dordogneshire there's still a chance you won't get a mobile signal - we had a chap staying a while back who got a bit lost whilst out for a cycle ride - he stopped to ask a lady, who was working in her garden, the way and she and her husband then drove 50 yards or so down the road to show him ....turned out he was not that lost after all. Later, his saviours arrived at the cabin with bags of fresh garden vegetables and an invite for dinner the next day! That just doesn't happen when your head's down, staring at your device. Which just goes to show, good things may happen if you just let yourself switch off.
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