October 31, 2004

Compton Verney or The Story of Two Losers

It must be in our blood, the passion for adventure. Getting up at 9am on a foggy Saturday, catching the bus without a faintest idea about the destination, getting lost, overcoming embarrassment, getting scared, getting even more lost… almost masochistic it sounds. But the reward is worth it.

Compton Verney - a palace in the middle of nowhere. A stunning place with picturesque views and fascinating arts exhibitions. We made it there. Barely. The Peter Greenawayís exhibition 92 Suitcases was something really worth seeing. Admittedly, I didnít get most of it. Itís still being digested. But there was this magical room, where all the 92 suitcases were hanging there with light bulbs flashing to the tone of music. It contained life itself in it. It even smelt special. I could stand there and watch the lights going on and off for ages. But it was just too cold, so we had to head back. Iím sure Loser Number Two linktext will write more about this exhibition. And as to me, I was fascinated with the trip itself.

Itís always easier to get to a place rather than to get back from that place. The middle of nowhere had no bus stops nearby. We had all sorts of crazy ideas on mind: hitch-hiking, walking, dialling a cab, etc. We even wanted to make a bus stop of our own with some abandoned poster-holder stick. But eventually, we made it to an epitome of civilization with a Stagecoach bus stop.

After about ten minutes of senseless celebration of our victory over the British roads we decided to phone up the Stagecoach people to ask for the next bus. We were nicely informed 'it shall come in an hour's time'. Being left with this little town and its residents alone we finally had some time to sit down and enjoy the life.

Loser One -> Loser Two

A sudden urge for a toilet caught us in the middle of appreciating the beauty of the town. Hoping to find refuge in the local church we headed towards the idling people on the streets to ask for directions. Turned out, churches are no good even for that. Instead, we were offered a very private toilet in a very private house of a respectfully old lady. Relived and amazed by the hospitality of the people we wandered back to the bus stop, each thinking her own thoughts.

When finally the Stagecoach appeared on the horizon I felt like Robinson Crusoe being rescued from the lonely island. As to conclude, I would like to say that spontaneity, as proven by ourselves, is an exciting and stupid thing. But if the excitement is worth the stupidity, itís worth taking the plunge.

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