Sunday, December 6, 2009

Ruminations on Walking and Timeless Love

So enticing...don't you just want to go for a walk?
Admit it, you have this fantasy too.
Darcy strides toward you through a misty morning...

He draws closer as your heart is beating madly...Walking is excellent cardiovascular exercise.

For some reason, I was thinking today about all the wonderful public access trails in England. When we lived in Ireland, we really enjoyed walking around villages and in the countryside. Shops were close together and it was easy to park and go from place to place on foot. We could get from one end of Westport to the other with no trouble. I really miss those places. Really, as in my heart hurts a little thinking about not being there.

Jane Austen wrote of heroines who liked to walk; she purportedly shared that characteristic. There's a great little Austen blog that gives a glimpse of her writing on the behavior here. Austen continues to gather fans almost 200 years after her death. I have one lucky friend - an enthusiastic hiker - who recently went on an Austen-themed tour in England, and another, Bee Drunken, who is a steward of Jane's house in Chawton. Though we three have different parents, our shared fanhood of Jane makes us sisters. Jane gave us terrific strong heroines who weren't afraid of a little mud on their shoes, and who "dearly love a laugh." Indeed, Jane's Elizabeth Bennett goes on to explain, "I hope I never ridicule what is wise or good. Follies and nonsense, whims and inconsistencies do divert me, I own, and I laugh at them whenever I can."

True dat.

I love the walking scenes in Pride and Prejudice with Matthew MacFadyen and Keira Knightley. Thanks to the miracle of the internets, I can share a wonderful video with you all. A young woman who's as crazy about MacFadyen as me and far more talented with technical production created a wonderful piece that merges clips of P&P with Vanessa Carlton's great song "A Thousand Miles." Zeynep, the 26 year old who produced the video, is from a place much further away than a thousand miles. She lives in Turkey. Cool, huh?

Pop it out to full screen and savour the goodness.

Update: I contacted Zeynep to let her know I was mentioning her in my blog, and she wrote back, sharing the link to her own blog. It's called isfendan; the tagline is suffering is my bread and butter! Much of it's in Turkish, but thanks to my handy translator, I can read it.

The title is appropriate for a Forrest to read; isfendan is Turkish for a maple.


phd in yogurtry said...

Keep posting scenes with Mr. Darcy and you've got a loyal reader forever.

Barry said...

As one walker to another (who is not afraid to get a little mud on his boots) thank you for this. I lived in England for several years in the early '60's and enjoyed the freedom to walk, something that seems to have been engineered out of our North American society by the very design of our cities.

Jane Austin would be appalled, but then I don't think she was a big fan of cities.

Jane Odiwe said...

Thanks for the mention and link to my blog - I am a certified Austen nut!
Your blog is lovely - great to 'meet you'!

Bee said...

The walking has been lousy here recently, if that makes you feel any better. I think that it has rained every day for the past six weeks. I'm pretty sure that Jane wasn't as wimpy as I am, though. There are some wooden "patterns" (shoes) at her house in Chawton. You can check them out when you VISIT.

(I will enjoy watching the virtual walk instead. It will make a change from walking back and forth to my kitchen to take cookies out of the oven.)

BTW, my parents and I will be eating mince pies at the house on December 16. Jane's birthday, of course.

Rachel said...

Ahhh a little Darcy in the morning is enough to get the heart rate up. I love this movie and it reminds me that it's time for my annual viewing.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

I think I'm going to go pop this in. Of course I'm hoping that it's Eliza B walking towards me and not Fitzwilliam D.

Fantastic Forrest said...

phd - will do. :)
Barry - you're right, as usual, on all counts.
Jane - you're my kind of nut!
Bee - I envy your parents the mince pies almost as much as their time with you - so delightful!
Rachel - only annual viewing? You're clearly not as dedicated as me.
Andrew - welcome! Love your blog. And you can have EB as long as I get FD.

Emm said...

Gosh Holly, I don't actually know where December went. Can I just apologise for only catching up on your blog now?

Being a heathen, I've never really had an interest in jane Austen or old, frilly books. But thanks to your entries (and dear Matthew) I am now proud to say I am interested! Perhaps I'll try read some this year! I'll watch the show first though!