The Slow Ways Shout! (GACONF22 TEACHMEET)

I don’t know why I put myself through it! A love for performing, geography and educating – all rolled into one, I guess! Almost every Geographical Association Conference Teachmeet I get lyrical. This year, I decided to honour the epic efforts and achievements of the team behind developing the Slow Ways. We’ll get back to that in a mo…

Go have a look at their amazing website! But before you do, enjoy a few things below. First, listen to me talk to Dan Raven-Ellison about Slow Ways on the Coffee & Geography podcast (skip to 22:37).

Dan gave a virtual session at the recent Geographical Association’s Hybrid Conference about Slow Ways, and can find a recording of it here for those of you with access.

And so, without further ado… let’s do the Slow Ways Shout!

‘The Slow Ways Shout’ Lyrics:

(Dan Raven-Ellison: One of tasks we had, was to go through about seven thousand Slow Way names and pick out the rude ones! And there was about two to three hundred Slow Way names that were just so offensive – and not even just offensive, you know, almost was like ‘Cards Against Humanity’ kind of like desperately, desperately disgusting sort of, like, ideas and words…)

Fear not you geography nerds
For thou shalt not be booming out obscenities
But what is this ‘Slow Ways’?
And what are these words of identities?
I came here today not by Guirip
And missed the wandering barge
By train (a slow way of sorts!)
Dodging the masses that charge

But if I was to trudge onward from the node of Norwich…
Wymnor, Mulnor, Tavnor
While Yarven strikes across the Isle of Wight
Alone Browhi walks the Arran shore
Be these giants of old and legend
That strode and claimed terrain?
No, the likes of Solhen, Shiban and Salfor
Are paths across our domain

Let’s troop south from London Town
Nay! Not by tube, automobile or horse and cart
That won’t do!
Go forth! March from Victoria!
Batvic, Batbri, Stibri, Mitstr, Sutmit, Satcou!
Such knights those trodden paths
Some littered with the signs of heroic struggles
With the night before
But an erie beauty if one looks 360

Such ways should be open to all
Gather your clan and welcome else all
In the valleys of the likes of Binshi
Many paths doth yonder run
Rural, urban and in between
They intertwine with confluence in superior fashion
And in one way or another, green
Even in dense places
Right out your door…

(Helen Illus: I really wanted to see London. I traveled on my own, it was my first solo travel and my first night when I was there I went to Kensington Park, and the next morning as well. And I was stunned by the wildlife I saw!)

So open your Gledor!
Embark on that hike you Camfor!
No matter if it’s a bit Chilea!
Trot over land to the Sunsea!
Whether the path be flat and still
Or has you trudging up a Brehil!
Whether to pass through or aim to Stihay!
Go forth, discover your Slow Way

Kit Marie Rackley (2022)

Originally performed at the Geographical Association Hybrid Conference 2022 at the University of Surrey (evening of 12th April). Thanks to GAConf22 official photographer Shaun Flannery for these wonderful pictures.

Thank you! All my education work via the Geogramblings’ “Life Geographic” blog is done all in my spare time, at my own cost but is free for you to access and enjoy. If you can spare a few pence, I’d be delighted if you could show your thanks by ‘buying me a coffee.

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