Tuesday 2 March 2010

Hints to Lady Travellers – Original Flavour

One of the most exciting things I did in London was pay a visit to the Royal Geographical Society. I wish I’d had more time to spend, because they had an exhibition of photos taken in the footsteps of Isabella Bird Bishop. But my main focus was the library where I had a date with a very special book: the original 1889 edition of Hints to Lady Travellers by Lillias Campbell Davidson.

Oh the joy. The elderly gentlemen who were the only other readers in the library must have wondered why I kept chuckling to myself. The list of contents included such topics as cushions, etnas, footwarmers, literature, luncheon baskets, return tickets, tea, wedges for doors.

Miss (Mrs?) Davidson and I have different takes on travel, but I admire her practical good sense and her pearls of wisdom, for example it is a great convenience to take one’s own bath with one in travelling.

I’ll be returning to Hints to Lady Travellers regularly, but for now I leave you with the words of the preface:

That it will fulfil the object of its compilation and prove a useful handbook and companion to her fellow-women who travel at home and abroad; and that, by its aid, the number of those who travel may be increased, is the hope of THE AUTHOR

(I’m going to start signing myself THE AUTHOR more.)

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