Right now I am overlooking the English Channel from Polly’s perch. Lyme Regis is nothing less than the perfect town by the sea. All hours of the day the shrieking chorus of waterfowl reminds you where you are, and the waters capture the sunlight, reminding you of some long forgotten painting. Polly and Kevin Benfield are amazing cheerful people. A pure incarnation of the happy atmosphere that charges the town.
When I first arrived yesterday, Polly told me she was “throwing me in the deep end” and no less then half an hour after I had arrived at the house, there was a tea party. Kevin’s mom, and stepfather came from their bungalow (91 and 96 respectively), and some of Kevin’s relatives from up north in Yorkshire had driven down and were visiting family. They were really nice and I didn’t get asked once “Are all Americans fat?” “Do you own a gun?” or “Do you have on of those big fridges?”
Afterward I settled into my bed for a long nap, and woke up just in time for dinner. Since Polly is originally from America she doesn’t call it “tea.” This morning Kevin woke me up at 8:30 and I showered, read some Lord of the Flies (which I finished about an hour ago), and ate breakfast. Then Polly took me with her to Dorchester. It is a nice little city. And like all cities it has a town centre which is for pedestrians only. I got a really positive vibe from it, and I don’t know whether it was the sun, the rope frilled with little pennants decked over the walkway, or my own mood.
We ate a small lunch at a very confusing bakery with delicious scones, and then went to the Dorset County museum. Through my recent exposure to museums I have realized that I love the Neolithic-Georgian artifacts, but anything more recent than that is boring and cheap entertainment. We then drove to the cottage of Thomas Hardy, a famous British author whose books I need to read. He lived in a perfectly placed house, that was very spare, with a thatched roof, and wonderful gardens literally buzzing with activity. They are very big on bees around there. We drove back to the house along the coast, and I was treated to some of the best views I have seen in a long time. Rolling green hills cascade down to the water, and finish in beaches of broken rock. I finished Lord of the Flies, read a couple short stories for AP Literature, and decided now would be a good time to share a town that will be perfect for my retirement in half a century.