To be a Pilgrim?

Welcome back to another blog hop, with #OpenBook. Here’s this week’s prompt.

Have you ever gone on a literary pilgrimage? If so, where and why?

To be honest, the idea has never really appealed to me. Not that I don’t have literary heroes, but to make a specific journey to see where they once lived doesn’t interest me. When I was in Stratford-upon-Avon, years before I ever considered writing, the queue to get into Shakespeare’s house was around the block, I was happy not to have to spend the day waiting to go in.

Confession time: I actually live about two miles from Agatha Christie’s house at Greenway, in Devon. But I’ve never been in the house or the grounds.

I’ve been past the estate when travelling on the River Dart and I drive past the entrance on a regular basis, yet I’ve never felt the need to go in and look around.

Not because I don’t admire Christie or love her work. I do, especially Miss Marple. I read many of the books whilst at sea and enjoyed the original BBC dramatisations (with Joan Hickson). They were a familiar part of television schedules in the late 1980s and early 90s.

I also have to admit that her brand of unorthodox sleuthing and her ability to see the significance in what others missed influenced the development of my own amateur detective, Andorra Pett.

So there is a definite connection, although obviously I’m not as famous as her. At least, not yet.

I digress (how unusual). I can’t really say why I’ve never been to visit, especially as it would involve me in little effort or take up much of my time. It certainly wouldn’t require a lot of planning or expense.

I think it’s a familiarity thing. In theory, I can go anytime, so I don’t.

After all, I can always go tomorrow.

Let me know what you think about this week’s subject.

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15 Responses

  1. Sue Korkis

    Great post, love your honesty. It’s usually the way isn’t it?… you live in a city but don’t visit anything, as you said, always tomorrow. 🙂 I have read a few Agatha Christie, light easy reading.

    • Richard Dee

      Thank you for commenting, It’s the same with the beach, we only really go when the grandchildren are here.

  2. Stevie Turner

    Thanks for the photos, Richard. I think if I lived that close to Greenway I would have visited it by now!

    • Richard Dee

      I will go in the end (I’ve been saying that for years).

  3. Lyndell Williams

    Great post. I can dig avoiding the crowds. It’s the reason why I have yet to visit the Empire State Building.

    • Richard Dee

      I would rather be on a deserted beach than in the middle of the City.

  4. P.J. MacLayne

    I once had the opportunity to visit Graceland. (You know, of Elvis Presley fame.) I didn’t go. 🙂

    • Richard Dee

      I can relate to that, I don’t think I would.

  5. phil huston

    I get it. There’s very little in the museums and homes save walking by the desk wherever whoever wrote. Been to a number of them. Parents would stop on vacation. I’d drive by them traveling for work. Stopped at a few. But, as my heroine discovers in this week’s link, a hero’s homestead is not a shrine, it’s a *bleeping* restaurant. However Turner’s sketchbook from Venice? Man. Get it out of the case, give me an hour. I’ll give it back, promise.
    Christie. I get it. We all read that stuff. Once the rules/formula were exposed it became a game picking them out when they flew by, like overdubs on an Eagles or Steely Dan album. And a goldmine for oldschool serial/pulp types. Once known one Christie is all Christie in a different set of clothes, save for her memorable forays away from what the publisher wanted. You sell that many books you can afford to throw them a curve once in a while!

    Books are the great escape, the ultimate pilgrimage, for many reasons. Content, style, structure, what works, what doesn’t and pure escapism.

    • Richard Dee

      I would rather read the work than see the desk, will anyone ever want to see this plastic keyboard? The great thing about writing crime set in space is that you have a whole new range of situations and circumstances to explore.

  6. phil huston

    About that Elvis thing…Not far down the street is a McDonalds. I once ate an order of fries standing on Cybil Shepard’s name etched in the cement.

  7. Elizabeth Gauffreau

    I would would visit Agatha Christie’s house in a heartbeat! But of course I live way across the ocean. Joan Hickson is the quintessential Miss Marple. She dithers, you see.

    • Richard Dee

      It’s a neat trick, the dramatic pause, the apparent confusion, the just one more thing. My sleuth tries it but sadly, she really doesn’t have a clue what’s going on.

  8. Roberta Eaton Cheadle

    Oooh, I must add Aggie’s house to my list, Richard. I love visiting famous homes. I featured Stratford-upon-Avon for my post as William Shakespeare is one of my favourite authors. I think I might turn this feature into an all week thing as I have visited so many famous author’s houses. My favourite thing about William’s birth place is the autographed window.

    • Richard Dee

      I believe you would love it at Greenway, it’s in a beautiful part of the country.

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