Dream realized

Hardy's boyhood cottage

Hardy’s boyhood cottage

If you read my earlier posts for this trip, you know that the seed of it was sown when I was introduced to British literature at about 13 or 14. Since reading about pasties and moors, I was compelled to see them for myself. No amount of reading or research was going to give me the knowledge of experience.
Hardy's desk

Hardy’s desk

The other day I got to experience something from the eyes of my favorite British author, Thomas Hardy. While visiting the cottage he grew up in as a boy and young man, I sat at his writing desk and looked out the same window he did for inspiration as he wrote about the people and the heath beyond. I was seeing a few more trees than Mr. Hardy did 150 years ago, but it was the same frame from which he extracted the setting for my favorite of his novels, Far from the Madding Crowd.

After visiting his boyhood home, we drove 10 miles or so to the house he built at the age of 45, when he had made enough money as a writer to quit his job as an architect and live off of his writing royalties. I am so glad that he experienced success as an author while he was still alive. In my mind, he deserved it.

Hardy's home after success

Hardy’s home after success

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