Tigger’s “Inner pigeon”

As we go about, sometimes on a predetermined route, sometimes more or less at random, Tigger shows a remarkable talent for finding her way. This works in both directions, both in travelling to our destination and in returning back to base afterwards. It is particularly marked when we have rambled far and at random and need to return, perhaps in time to catch a train. Tigger then demonstrates this ability to find her way without consulting map or compass or enquiring of passers-by.

Whether we are in London or in other cities of the UK or even abroad in places like Paris, Brussels or Berlin, Tigger seems to know the way back, no matter how far we have rambled.

We jokingly refer to this ability as Tigger’s “inner pigeon” as an analogy with homing pigeons who, however far you take them from home, always find their way back. The difference is that pigeons return to their home loft whereas Tigger can take us to whichever place is “home” in the present case, be it the hotel, the train station, the bus stop or the place where we are to meet somebody.

When we go a-wandering, I just follow Tigger and have little idea where I am. If Tigger were suddenly to disappear I would be lost and would, literally, not know which way to turn. Tigger always knows which way to turn. “It’s that way,” she will say and it always is. Not only that but she will find shortcuts that we did not take on the way out.

Just occasionally, the inner pigeon lets us down. It’s as though it has gone to sleep or has flown away on holiday. On such occasions, Tigger has to revert to other methods but usually still gets us home. Most of the time, however, the inner pigeon is there and doing its job.

Now that I have explained it, whenever I mention Tigger’s “inner pigeon” you will be able to imagine her magical navigational ability to get us home from strange places.