|Thirsk, as shown in James Herriot's Yorkshire|
during the 1970s.
There’s something inherently peaceful about wandering around the sleepy little Yorkshire villages in England. The lovingly preserved greengrocers, the butcher’s and the baker’s, and all the other shops imbue a sense of yearning. Life there seems so serene, untouched by the waves of progress that relentlessly wash across our globe. The village of Thirsk, for example, even boasts an old time cinema. While it offers its patrons a modern screen and sound system, its façade and interior seem little changed from the 1930s when James Herriot lived there. A trifle spiffed up perhaps, but no more than necessary to make it a warm and inviting place.
Today’s cars may fill the town center, or seek what space is accorded them along the village streets, but one can still blank those out, ignore the signs that signal current events, and imagine what life must have been like decades (or even centuries ago). One can wonder what it might be like to reside there. One can dream of a life away from the hustle, noise, and anonymity of the city, in a place where anyone can be someone, play a vital role in everyone’s life, and take part in everything that goes on there.
Then the locals confide that, in order to afford living there, they must drive off to shop at Walmart on the weekends, and the illusion, in all its grandeur, comes crashing down.
Still, one can dream.
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