Alternate Realities

Although I have only been away for a few days, it feels like a lot longer. I think this is because we crammed so much activity and travel into the time. The fact that some of the activity involved different realities from our own also contributed to this. For example, visiting Harry Potter Studios had the same effect on me as reading the books did. I didn’t really want to come out into the normal world afterwards! I may have to re-read them now.

colossus

Different kinds of reality were represented at The National Museum of Computing and Bletchley Park. In both cases it was more like going back decades into wartime and post-war history – although TNMOC brings the story of computing right up to date, there was a sense that the earliest computers were the most interesting. They were certainly the biggest! (see reconstructed Colossus above) It’s fascinating to see all the workings of a computer set out in front of you, instead of having it hidden away inside a cabinet or case. I was relieved as well to see that the computer aspects of one of my recent plots turned out to be fairly feasible. I hope to develop this further as well as hinting a bit more about a character’s wartime background. But not until November…

Just as we thought we were back in our own time and space, we ran into a wedding party in our hotel in Derby, and life turned into a kind of time travel or paranormal story – or possibly a Doctor Who episode – where you visit a different era and you can see the people there but they can’t see you! It felt as if we, in our dark outfits, moved among all the people in the flimsy pastel dresses and pale grey suits almost like ghosts, not impinging on their reality at all. This was fine – I don’t object to wedding parties as such, and they all seemed perfectly pleasant – except that the hotel staff had also moved into the reality of the wedding and seemed reluctant to come out and deal with anything else. So my tip of the week is to check with hotels before you stay there, in case there is a wedding due to take place during your stay!

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