I am just back from a week’s holiday in Dartmouth. I had a lovely, restful time and got to do a lot of reading.
No trip to Dartmouth would be complete without a visit to Agatha Christie’s house Greenway. She described it as, ‘The loveliest place in the world,’ and it really is beautiful. You can see that the views when she lived there must have been amazing, although the trees have grown up a bit now and obscure the view somewhat.
Some of the nicest things about the house are the bookshelves. A great many National Trust houses have libraries which are filled with books bought by the yard – all matching and never read. The books here were completely mismatched and looked very well read which made me so happy. There were naturally many different editions of Agatha Christie’s own books and I fell in love with this little bookcase on the landing. I want one!
Perhaps my favourite thing though was the drawer of imaginatively addressed envelopes which found their way to the house.
Of these, I was especially fond of this one which is just wonderful.
Of course, we had to walk down to the boathouse which features so prominently in Dead Man’s Folly. We had been listening to the audio book on the way down to Dartmouth and I finished it after our visit. I have read it before but it was fascinating to read it again and be able to picture the scene exactly.
Once in the boathouse we spent a long time watching the river from the balcony. It is such a peaceful spot and it is a lovely place to sit. There is a fireplace inside so I should think it would be wonderfully cosy in winter too. Whilst there I also got to sit in Agatha Christie’s own chair – it was made especially for her and she used to sit in it to look over her manuscripts. One couldn’t read anything but Dead Man’s Folly there and there was a handy copy lying on the chair with a useful label pointing me to the relevant pages.
We left by ferry and so walked down to the quay through the woods – the shortcut which so infuriated Sir George Stubbs. It was a lovely day and I’m sure I will be back again in the future.