Thursday, August 23, 2007

7.8.07: On the Ness and on the train

7.45 am:
Up early, but Colin has beaten me. He drives from Maidstone up to three times a week to fish here. He tells me how the mackeral drive shoals of whitebait up onto the shingle where they are gathered - and cooked.

The coastguard's lookout has been purchased privately, "refurbished" and a barrier erected, evidence of the gentrification of Dungeness.

Walking towards the little train station, Dungeness power station looks sculptural in the morning sun.

I catch the Dymchurch light railway steam train back to see Jo and use her computer. It passes through miniature sidings and past miniature signal boxes, and through a narrow passage between back gardens. A small boy sitting near the front makes dramatic coughing, choking and dying gestures with much hilarity. He is on holiday at Camber Sands, hopefully in good health.

Back at Jo's house, she shows me Google Earth and zooms in from space to my house in Whitstable, and to hers here. You could monitor this whole journey from space.

I have received an email from Fred Knittle of the U.S. choir Young@Heart, whose programme has been shown several times on Channel 4. This seniors' choir sing contemporary songs. Fred retired from the choir due to health problems but still makes guest appearances and sings Coldplay's "Fix You", his oxygen bottle at his side. I am honoured and overwhelmed that he has replied to my email.

Jo drives me back to Dungeness in the evening and we eat excellent fish and chips at the Brittannia pub near where I'm staying.