Dartmouth is a small coastal town in south Devon, which is in the south-west of England, which is a part of Great Britain. Britain is currently in Europe, but it’s a little uncertain how long that will continue. Many of the lines tethering us to the rest of the continent have been severed, and preparations seem to be afoot to hoist the sails aloft and plot a course for the Americas.

My family has had ties to Dartmouth for something like 30 years now, ever since my Dad and Grandmother drove over the headland and saw the pretty little port laid out below them. They were looking for a place for my grandparents to retire to, and family folk-lore has it that they turned to one another saying ‘this is the place’. Almost immediately everything went soft-focus and tinkly music began to play, for it was love at first sight. The clan had arrived in Dartmouth and, for good or ill, have never left.

Incidentally, this might be an opportune moment to mention the nature of my family’s stories and ‘tales of yore’. There are many, and like this blog, much contained within is far from reliable gospel truth. They are entertaining, however, in their own special way, and become progressively more so with every retelling. Propogation of such stories is a tradition eagerly adhered to, and the process has surely found no more enthusiastic a participant than my father himself. Many a dinner-time proclamation has begun with “I’ve probably mentioned this before…”, and it has become something of a game to try and finish off the stories for him. I do wonder whether this is the entire aim, however, since he has often remarked that unless the stories are hammered into my generation, they will simply vanish. And what a tragic loss to the world that would be…

It’s in Dartmouth that I have been for the last week or so, and it’s less than a week till I’m there again. Next week is the ‘Port of Dartmouth Royal Regatta’, with events galore, but I’ll tell you more about them at the time. What other news is there for you to catch up on?

I have a new phone. You may remember that my previous phone was, well, useless. It suffered a long, drawn out, tortuous death, and every day I looked forward to seeing just how out of date the messages I received would be. Finally I gave up, and went and got myself a new phone. I haven’t yet decided what to do with the carcass of my old phone. I’m thinking some sort of ritual sacrifice, though perhaps trying to exact revenge on an inanimate object is a bit weird.

Now, I’m not sure whether this has come across yet in my blog, but I’m a bit of a gadget freak. I don’t own that many, but when I can get my hands on a new piece of kit it’s like all my birthdays come at once. I went into the mobile phone shop intending to buy the cheapest phone possible, (attempting to curb my escalating financial crisis), but that’s not quite how it panned out. The best laid plans, eh? At least I get to play with my new toy’s camera, mp3 player, organiser, email, java games, polyphonic ringtones and video football highlights…

The biggest advantage of ‘my new toy’ is that, with its email function, I should be able to blog from anywhere in the country! (insert appropriate evil laugh). I haven’t tried it yet, and I also don’t know whether there is network coverage in the area of Cornwall I’m gonna be in during September, but with any luck you’ll be receiving regular updates throughout. I can almost hear you sighing in relief.