Glorious, stirring sight! The poetry of motion!
The real way to travel! The only way to travel!
Here today – in next week tomorrow!
Villages skipped, towns and cities jumped – always somebody else's horizon!
O bliss! O poop-poop! O my! O my!
Ah, the famous Toad: he knew a thing or two. And tomorrow I shall be joining his noble vision, traversing our fine nation by road, and all at the cost of the public purse too!
Explanation: as a shortly-to-become marker of the youth of today's GCSE papers, I have been summoned up to the Midlands for a day's training in how to correctly do a tick (we will be doing the downstroke in the morning, the upstroke in the afternoon). My expenses (inclusing meals) will be paid, and my wage will be over double my normal. But that's not the best part …
I get to drive up my favourite road of all: the Fosse Way.
I LOVE Roman Roads – they are beautiful, cracking to drive on, and join up all the prettiest (ie. pre-industrial) towns in Albion.
The Fosse Way starts near my parents' house (originally it linked Exeter and Lincoln) and will take me all the way to my B&B (in a chicken farm with its own water wheel) just by Leamington Spa.
And on the way I get to pass through some of the pearls of English nomenclature and quaintness: Stow-on-the-Wold, Cirencester, Moreton-in-Marsh, The Shoe, and Bath.
And here is my point: if I went by motorway, I would miss these. The journey would consume less time, yes, but what are the accumulated riches of the motorway? Tarmac, Burger King and brisk monotony. I prefer the Roman way.