BORED with your regular stomping ground? Then let the people you know and trust send you somewhere different.
That’s what we did and now we’d recommend random travel as a surefire way out of a rainy, February, no-money rut.
Admittedly, we were spurred into action by a Leeds College of Art project brief – you don’t do much painting in art degrees, contrary to popular belief. it’s all about creating ‘happenings’.
But anyone could try it, just for fun.
We ended up eating crispy duck in the middle of the afternoon in Shipley and commandeering some playing fields near Cragg Vale for a strange two-person game of rounders with a baseball bat and a tennis ball ... and it was all pretty unexpected and entertaining.
So how did that happen? Well, we picked out 25 people we knew and asked five of them each of five questions – (1) Name a place in West Yorkshire, (2) Name a thing to take on a day out, (3) Name something to eat on a day out, (4) Suggest a thing to do on a day out and (5) Pick a favourite word.
We didn’t tell our volunteers much, we didn’t want them thinking too hard about their answers.
We pulled responses from envelopes in random combinations for five magical mystery tours. So each helper dictated only one in five factors for each day. Things like the ‘favourite word’ element were left to our own interpretation.
For example, our first set of instructions was:
Go to Shelf near Halifax: My friend Gail’s idea as there’s a restaurant there that she likes
Take a camera: “For lovely snaps” as suggested by Diane.
Buy and eat a pre-packed salad nicoise: An idea from Martine, who’s French
Sing! Um, thanks Adele.
The word: This was the German word for buttonhole ‘Knopfloch’, dreamed up by Bev.
We took photos through buttonholes, toured the nearby Buttershaw estate by mistake and scoffed Asda tuna pasta from a tub, as that was the closest we could find to salad nicoise.
It might not sound like a classic day out but we had a laugh and it was cheaper and closer than Alton Towers.
Anyone could adapt our idea – you can make your own rules. We liked how our mission for each day was so unpredictable that it meant we had no choice but to enjoy ourselves, forgetting our usual to-do list and chores.
OK, so my mum had a point when she laughed and said: “Well I suppose it’s all right if you’ve got nothing better to do.”
Other people might just ask: “Why?”
We say: “Well why not?”