This is a different sort of journey, and to be honest, I’m slightly cheating with the title, because the train journeys I took as a student carried me to Manchester to do my degree at what was then Manchester Polytechnic. My friend Andrew, who I write about below, also travelled north to Manchester which is where we met a very long time ago, in fact we will be celebrating a big anniversary of our friendship later this year!
Here is a reflection on travel, and how it’s changed my life:
I had a great weekend – I caught up with my oldest and closest friend, Andrew Simpson; we met rather a long time ago, when we were in our first year doing a degree at the College of Knowledge as the College of Commerce, part of Manchester Polytechnic was called.
As usual Andrew and I didn’t stop talking, subjects ranging over just about everything especially about our writing; we are both published authors, and writing is our life! We also talked about how things have changed – all sorts of things in all sorts of ways, since we first met. Andrew had a great idea for a blog post, or an autobiography ‘How Far We Have Travelled’. It’s not just our own personal circumstances which have changed several times in the course of our friendship, the world has changed too. We often say, rather wistfully, that when we were at the Poly doing our degrees, despite the impoverished circumstances and to be frank insalubrious living conditions, we actually lived in a golden age. We don’t mean that we wished things hadn’t changed – we don’t! Good grief, if anyone could revisit the attic ‘flat’ I shared at the top of an old vermin-infested Victorian house when I was a student, and then compare it to the halls or residence my children lived in when they were doing their degrees, no-one would wish to reverse the progress which has been made in so many ways!
Our journey is not just our lives, and our personal lives and our circumstances, our wonderful partners and children, it’s the station where our life train has pulled into at the moment, I guess it could be called the writing station! Both of us write blogs as well as our books, both of us observe, reflect, record. I write from my imagination, Andrew writes imaginatively but using historical facts and materials.
If I could just go back to myself at eighteen or nineteen, and look forward to the future, it would seem like a dream come true to be where I am now – how far I have travelled, how far indeed!
Here is a link to Andrew’s piece, ‘How Far We Have Travelled’:
… and here is a link to his books which I recommend you read if you haven’;t already:
… and to my books: