- Reciprocation and the Boston Stump
- 2014-08-06: A friend posted this photograph on Facebook to an open narrowboating group:
- "I keep forgetting to show you this. My husband took a few pictures some time ago"
- My comment? "£1,000 to go up it and hanging if you take a photograph as I recall, but bitterness and time may have caused exaggeration."
- To which she replied "What?"
- Turns out, the noteworthy point about the picture was the seal.
- I was entirely, totally blinded to the seal. I didn't even see it.
- What I saw was the Boston Stump, and I was taken back to a narrowboat trip my partner and I took perhaps twenty years ago. I recall the long and straight and wide and high-sided canals to Boston that took boring hours to travel through. And when we arrived in Boston, main attraction The Stump, it was a) too much money to go up it, and b) there was a clear sign saying you were not allowed to take a photograph at the top. A photograph from the top, of our boat, would have been the main purpose of going up. So we declined.
- Clearly though, it's left a resentment burning. Enough to traverse twenty years or so, and to bypass the pleasure of the seal photograph.
- Such is the power of reciprocation.
- Do something nice for me, and I'll be nice back. Do me wrong and I'll do you wrong back.
- It's human nature, I'm not being all big man .. it's a key part of our head, we all do it.
- So .. be nice, always. Give, always. Go above and beyond.
- And if I've remembered the Boston Stump wrongly, forgive me. I'm sure, anyway, there was a good reason for charging as they did. Someone has to pay to keep it upright. But that's no matter. Perception is what matters. And I still feel wronged.
- PS. I stole that photograph. I may have done a bad thing.
By John Allsopp
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