The pulse of the town as it swells for the summer - town crier column
PUBLISHED: 07:00 24 August 2019
In his latest column, town crier Roger Bourgein talks about how summer tourism changes Exmouth
Holidays! Time for that annual transformation of Exmouth as it swells to almost double in size from about forty thousand to nearly eighty thousand.
Yes, it's summer's tsunami of visitors that gives me and our town much pleasure. We are a community that needs visitors, from the huge spike in local employment, to their holiday £s spilling as seed from the farmer's drill, falling upon our beds to sleep, tables to eat, from the loud of music to the quiet of poetry, the chuckles from our gorgeous gold sand as this summer's sunshine encourages those drips falling and sliding down cones piled high.
Now, weather of malevolence has stamped its foot, much like the tantrum of a two-year-old. That glorious warmth of wall-to-wall hot sun has been elbowed aside by torrential, stinging, wetting rain, those sweet zephyrs have become wolves in sheep's clothing, hurling trees, fences, dustbins and then that sign of real grumpiness, rumbling, crashing thunder so strong all sentient beings pull covers tight over heads and bodies.
I missed most of that, spending a wonderful uplifting and exhilarating week in Brittany, France, singing sea shanties at the Paimpol Shanty Festival.
I sing with the Exmouth Shanty Men and we worked very hard, struggling through crowds pressed as tight as sardines in a tin, to reach the next designated quayside singing spot or stage, performing our set then repeating up to four times each day.
By the finish we'd sung best part of one hundred songs, without repeating a single song!
As your town crier, nothing makes me more content than feeling the pulse of the town.
Is it happy, is it sad? I question both, needing to hear the stories, the tales and allowing my empathy to be grabbed by grateful eyes.
Thank you all.