Saturday, May 29, 2010

Putting my best foot forward

I would like to declare at the outset that this post id the result of a competition that I won recently.

A while ago I started my search in earnest to find a really good pair of walking boots with a view to a trip to the States to celebrate a special birthday for my wife, Cathy.  One of the places I went to look was Brasher.  While on their site I saw they had a newsletter and, as I signed up, I saw that they did a monthly drawing to win a pair of boots for new subscribers.  I signed up in the hope that I might get some sort of discount offer in a newsletter, what I got was a complete surprise.  A few weeks after signing up I found that I had been drawn to win a pair of new Brasher boots of my choice from their catalogue!

The boots arrived today, Lithium GTX, full of Goretex goodness.  I couldn’t wait to get them out to try on.  IMAG0615

These boots mark a change for me.  I have always been a leather boot sort of chap, never gave a lot of thought to newer developments – to be fair I didn’t expect to be buying the top end type of boot and many much cheaper fabric boots seemed to be more like beefed up trainers.

Having the freedom to choose any boot I took time to learn about the many different types and what they were best suited for.  We will be visiting a variety of terrain in the US from mountains to salt plains to westrn seaboard so I needed a boot that was versatile.  We might undertake activities such as horse riding so I needed a boot that wasn’t too bulky.  The boot would also need to comfortable in all sorts of locations as I intend wearing them in urban and country settings, in hot and cold temperatures. 

I needed to have my feet carefully measured before committing to size, since Brasher would be sending the boots direct.  Fortunately with the help of Sarah in Brasher’s publicity department I went along to their Premier stockist nearest to West Cornwall – Penrose Outdoors in Truro.  Cathy and I were treated really well at the store, even though I explained I needed measuring but the boots would come to me direct from Brasher.  While Cathy would need a pair of boots for the US we had decided that the most we would do is by some socks to say thanks for measuring my feet.  (In fact, Lynette at the store was so knowledgeable and helpful we ended up getting Cathy a pair of boots from there, plus some sets of socks and boot care products).

I can’t wait to be able to try the boots out on a walk but that’s another post, as they say.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

When does one stop waiting for the big idea?

I have started a bunch of posts over the last month, (yes, month).  Not one idea managed to grow into something resembling my idea of a post.  The month before that I struggled to hold on to the big thoughts I have when driving in this beautiful county of Cornwall; much of what I have to say when behind the wheel relates to the views, reflections and memories of growing up here. But that’s where it stops, (yes, I started a sentence with But – that isn’t necessarily a crime, no matter how uncomfortable it is making me feel.  I am trying to get to grips with whatever creature it is that gets in the way of my writing these days.  With the idea that the human mind will put all sorts of obstacles in the way to avoid change, I am embracing the awkward and uncomfortable, in the hope that I am doing good, making a difference, playing my part in the electronic world I have hung out in for all these years).

Harbour in Sunshine IMAGE_265-714727

It’s views like this when nipping down to the shop, that pass me by nine times out of ten but that one time pulls me up short every time. 

Thoughts that occur to me, when I visit coastal locations similar to Porthleven, I immediately think about how closed in they feel but I never think that about my own village; even though, looking out from the Harbour Head (as the grassed area at the back of the harbour is called), I struggle to see the open sea.  Where the natural geography stops the man made finishes off the enclosure but I do not normally see that.  When I say don’t see i mean that I have a scotoma, as Lou Tice would put it, I just couldn’t see it.  I can look at it but I couldn’t “see” it.  It could be because I have climbed the sides of the village and see the open sea but I don’t think so, I think that like so many people before I see the world in a drop of water, the world in the life of the village.  Porthleven, built from the fractals of the rest of the world.

I have been thinking about houses lately, in comparison to many our little cottage is plain but I have decided that I don’t mind what the house looks like – when it comes down to it, if I live in a house it’s the outside that means more.  There are places in Cyprus which are pretty much boxes but that’s fine, they have something to look at, greenery, sea, whatever, heck in the right location most of life can run outdoors.  When things are rough weatherwise, I can be at home in a room, this netbook my window on the world. 

A musical interlude at this point.  As I go to write more, in the background the theme music from the science fiction series Star Trek Voyager isplaying.  I love this piece of music, with it’s classical and futuristic associations.  Here is a link to a version on YouTube:  

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Cornwall, United Kingdom
A married Cornishman who is getting an inkling of what he wants to be when he grows up. I currently work for the NHS. [See bottom of page for Blog Archive and Links.]