15 Watch out, you’ve just been twinned

When this blog began 15 weeks ago, I promised it would not describe the world from my personal sock drawer but look with eager eyes outwardly and search for meaning within the broader sunny vistas of society, the glittering panoramas peopled brilliantly every day by our crazy attempts at communicating meaningfully with one another. Since when, it hasn’t stopped raining.

So I’m off. Time for a holiday. Morpeth or Morocco? Life is full of tough decisions. Had actually wanted to do the whole UK staycation thing this year, just to see what it’s like spending two weeks inside a freshly invented cliché. But frankly, there’s only so much rain you can take. Summer after summer.

Which finally explains, I suppose, all those Twinned With signs you see on the road outside towns all over the UK. I see now they’re just a form of rampant escapism.

Personally I love the ludicrous arithmetic involved. Slough, for example, is twinned with Montreuil in France and Riga in Latvia. Well done. Except that’s not twinning. That’s being triplets. Don’t even ask about Leeds. It’s twinned with eight other places from the USA to Mongolia, which says something about how they teach biology in Yorkshire.

The point is, this twinning thing is just an excuse for the local energetic great and good to sun themselves abroad at the expense of all the drowned rats at home.

The best sign of the lot belongs to Reading.
reading 1
First off, quadruplets! You must be so very proud. Just to confirm: Dusseldorf is indeed that ugly city in Germany and Clonmel a town somewhere in Ireland you don’t want to visit. So that’s a fairly appropriate connection with Reading.

The other two places, you might not know so well. That’s because Speightstown is a coastal paradise in Barbados. If you’re wondering what it looks like, it looks like this. Yes, really.
reading copy
And San Francisco Libre is a small rural town close to the magnificent conical Momotombo Volcano only 50 miles from the capital of Nicaragua. Thank you, elected members of Reading, it’s good to know that comedy is alive and throbbing in the council chambers of royally wet Berkshire. Honest to God, you couldn’t make this stuff up!

Readers, thank you for reading here these past 15 weeks. Obviously the nonsense that has fuelled this column continues all around us in our daily lives. And you don’t need a bloodhound to find it.

Back soon.

Nielsen Dinwoodie
business messages people remember


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