Chapter 10. A Whole New Way Of Life


Basingstoke - A whole new way of life. Yes, that's the slogan of this forward-looking metropolis of the future.

Over the centuries, the forces of order have struggled, with some degree of success, to control the green and pleasant lands of the greater Basingstoke area and yet the anarchic spirit of the Sons of Baz still remains strong. In spite of all efforts to 'beautify' the town, that indescribable 'modern' architecture continues mysteriously and magically to blot the landscape in much the same way as Stonehenge once scarred the face of Salisbury Plain. During the Nineteen-Nineties, Basingstoke began to assume a new role as an alpha center of creativity, calling out to artists around the world to come and enjoy a unique bohemian lifestyle. This movement was spearheaded by the opening of numerous 'theme' pubs in the old town center, masterfully designed to remove any last vestiges of vintage character the town may once have possessed.

And now, not quite in time for millennium, the Third Age of Basingstoke has dawned. Following yet another prolonged apocalypse the town center has once more regenerated, taking a new almost unrecognizeable form. Sleek white forms arc high over the heads of shoppers, forms that will doubless retain their gleaming sparkle for many ages of man, not becoming dated or fading to a dirty yellow over time, but remaining an ageless icon of style to countless generations of Basweigens.

Come now, descendants of Sir Guy de Guedelhomme, and complain about the shopping! Why I just bought a pair of shoes in Basingstoke that I have recieved complements on in one of the world's leading fashion houses! Marvel, Frenchies, at the fine restaurants that have marked Basigstoke as one of the leading culinary capitals of Europe! For even my brother-in-law who is a notoriusly picky eater was astonished the excellence of his meal! And bow-down at the feet of large screen wonder, those who once siad that there was no call for a cinema in the town center and that the old ABC should be converted into a Bingo hall. Indeed they did a very good job with that and all.

The opportunities in this new town are now limitless and the "Gateway to Basingstoke" project has continued to ensure that the town will remain an idyllic haven for those seeking an alternative lifestyle well into the new millennium and beyond. So, people of the primal tribe, next time you're riding that train from Waterloo, take a second look out the window at Basingstoke and consider parking your caravan where the "shrooms grow free" for good!


Appendix: Live the Adventure - The Basingstoke Historical Pub Crawl







Artwork and text ©2004 Chuck Whelon
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