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woofwoof

The world less travelled

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With an engaging enthusiasm, Nick Procter describes some of the less well known places that he has visited over the years – Luxembourg, Gibralter, Helsinki, and Poole Harbour amongst others. It is also no doubt the first time anyone has ever included the town of Basingstoke in a travel book! (Procter spends about 16 pages discussing the outstanding features of that town including Marks and Spencers, Weatherspoons, Accessorise and Poundland. (It reminds me of when Nandos was voted Preston’s best restaurant…). Proctor writes very well, including numerous anecdotes and as befits a true travel writer is always happy to venture down any physical cul-de-sacs and to follow through with any tangents that come to mind. He includes numerous interesting facts. Who knew for instance that Luxembourg has its own language distinct from both French and German called appropriately enough, "Luxembourgish" My favourite quotes from the book “It remains the only time in my life that I have seen a peacock on a beach and I can’t think of when I will see another one.” “I used the word monkey in the previous paragraph for brevity, but monkey is too casual a term for my liking.” (About a garlic producing farm on the Isle of Wight): "I don't think I've had a better day out anywhere ever" - this is from a man who had visited 5 continents by the age of 14!)

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On 08/05/2019 at 23:18, woofwoof said:

 the first time anyone has ever included the town of Basingstoke in a travel book! 

Does he give the G&S connection a mention?

I'm afraid that since my first experience of Ruddigore  (back in the early 1960s),  that is my first thought on hearing anyone mention Basingstoke.

A reference probably completely lost to all but the keenest (or eldest) Gilbert & Sullivan fans nowadays

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Probably the people of Basingstoke prefer to forget it. At least it doesn't insult the town, (as Betjemann does to Slough) but does cause some embarrassing hilarity on the infrequent occasions that Ruddigore is performed these days. 

 

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