One of the interesting things about blogging is that you get to know so many interesting parts of the world. My regular "reads" give me insights into life in Ohio, Rhode Island, Sydney, Ottawa and so many other fascinating places and I build up pictures of the look and feel of these places from the pictures and the words published. And on the assumption that I am not too unusual ("eccentric" I will accept, "unusual" I will argue against), there must be people out there wondering what this West Yorkshire place is. (That is on the assumption that my readers actually exist and are not represented by a stream of cyber comments sent out by a powerful blogger.com computer - you have to wonder after blogger was feeling ill yesterday and no comments were generated!).
Where was I? Right, West Yorkshire. If you want to know about West Yorkshire you can turn to Wikipedia and it will tell you that it is a metropolitan county within the Yorkshire and the Humber region of England with a population of 2.2 million. Read on and it will give you pictures of Kirkstall Abbey, Harewood House and even the Emley Moor Mast (which, when the leaves fall from the trees I can see from my window). But is this the real West Yorkshire, the typical West Yorkshire, the essence of West Yorkshire?
So I have a plan for a new project. I have a street atlas of West Yorkshire. The entire county is covered in a series of maps covering 239 pages. Each map is divided into forty small squares, each square representing an area of 500 square metres. That is 9,560 squares. Each of those squares is a part of West Yorkshire and each, in its own way, is typical of West Yorkshire. So let us pick ten of those nine and a half thousand squares at random and see what they look like. The mechanics is relatively easy, all you need to do is to turn to one of the many on-line random number generators. And then it is counting and plotting. And then comes the fascinating bit - the visiting and the recording.
Each week over the next ten weeks or so I will visit a square picked at random and try to give you a feel of the place in images and in (a few) words. We start tomorrow. The random number machine came up with the first square on Monday and I went there yesterday. Is it typically West Yorkshire?. You will have to visit tomorrow to find out.