I have built my professional life on the English language, as a journalist and a public affairs consultant. Now after half a century it’s time to explore a few different pathways, free of the many burdens of professional life but not undisciplined. The Traveller will embrace my continued interest in the affairs of the day, the use and abuse of the English language and my particular obsessions with trains and train travel, and with the life and works of P.G. Wodehouse. There will be personal bits from time to time but not, I hope, too self-indulgent. We’ll see.
I have taken the following as my text:
THE ROAD NOT TAKEN
By Robert Frost (1874–1963)
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.