|Lance the American, in his attempt to steal a bony-chested blonde from a Dutch doctor, had suggested a weekend of backpacking. And he didn't know if the sinking pit in his stomach was the granola or a gnawing certainty that THIS WOULDN'T END WELL.|
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.)
What would Betty consider a wholesome family activity?
We know she would walk for miles (sometimes into the teeth of a gale) around the assorted beauty spots of the Dutch, British and Portuguese countrysides. She would have picnic lunches with fresh made lemonade. She'd teach her little nippers to swim in the North Sea and they would probably fish, swim and sail with equal aplomb--but backpacking? I just don't see it.
Still, I think she would have made a great backpacking traveling companion. First, you can't go wrong with a trained medical professional along. Second, she had a great fondness for endowing her heroines with pocket scissors and pocket knives for all kinds of emergencies. Third, I cannot help but think fondly of her biographical description of her own mother bursting into tears at the sight of La Neels' post-war Dutch cottage (which, if memory serves, had been reclaimed from sunken lands!). So, she knew how to rough it.
So, I'll have her along with me in spirit (and maybe a copy of The Promise of Happiness) even if she maybe didn't do this sort of thing...
*Of course I had to link to this. Duh! And another for the lame-o-s who weren't in German class...