…that was the quickest fortnight ever known in the history of man but there you are. Lovely holiday now over. Other members of the family are removing sharp instruments from any room I am in. Not so much about going back to work (obviously I’m VERY keen on that) no, I always get quite wistful at the end of a holiday about the passage of time. I think it’s only when you slow down that you notice how quickly the year is going. We were walking the hounds in the park last week and noticed that the leaves were falling. It’s only August for goodness sake! Anyway it’s no good shaking your fist at trees – it makes no difference to them and people look at you in a quizzical way before moving on as quickly as they can manage without actually running.
We were in London for some of the break as those of you who had been paying attention will know. We didn’t see any rioting. We stayed in Kensington and they seemed to keep it to a minimum there. We did hear a lot of police cars the first night but to be honest, we thought it was just a case of “bright lights – big city”. Well we live in Devon, and it can be a big night on Spotlight news if a sheep gets stuck on a railway line. So, apart from some disruption to the Tube, we saw nothing. On the holiday front, highlights included “Warhorse”. It’s difficult to explain why it is so good. It’s a play about horses.. er in the war which are realised using puppets and it involves a lot of folk singing and “interesting” West Country accents. I know it doesn’t sound promising but ten minutes in you forgot the horses were puppets and it swept you along. Quite brutal in places. I had to fight the desire to run on to the stage and cut the bloomin’ horse free from the barbed wire myself at one point but certainly a night to remember. We also spent a day at Camden which is quite scary but excellent. Also, quite possibly the worst meal of my life eaten at Garfunkel’s. Not expecting the moon from there as you will apppreciate but waiter seemed to have trained at the Fawlty Towers School of Service. Actually witheld the tip, which I have never done and enjoyed doing it too. Small victory but somehow, pleasing.
We also rescued the dogs from the kennels when we got back (or the kennels from the dogs depending on your point of view) It was quite tense picking them up because we had neglected to mention that they don’t get on terribly well in a confined space and we had told them that they would be fine in the same pen. Look its 10% off if they share and we’re not made of money. Anyway, they were both alive when we got there so we paid and ran for it. Lucy, unfortunately for her, had a problem with her anal glands which involved a trip to the vets, rubber gloves and a lot of wincing on her part (and on Head of House’s part as well if I am honest) I didn’t go. I don’t do vets. I know, I know, what if Head of House said that but he doesn’t so keep your nose out.
We returned to church this morning to watch a montage of scenes from the riots. The one with the Malaysian guy being robbed as he was injured is almost impossible to watch. Found myslef being challenged about my involvement and relevance in my society. Sometimes church is seen as a bit wishy washy but I know that churches in the riot areas were front row centre in supporting their local community. It’s not terribly fashionable to give them any credit for it. I think, a bit like the England cricket team, who could only beat what was put in front of them, even if it was only a lack lustre India team. ( I sooo love Test Match Special on the radio – bit embarassing) In sort of the same way we can only grow and serve where we are planted. Not in the middle of a riot zone always. Devon was a bit short on riots (although apparently, there was a bit of a scuffle outside Poundland) but there are plenty of opportunities to serve here or anywhere really.
Finally, I draw your attention to the piece of equipment above spotted during a lovely stroll in the park. Apparently I am supposed to step up and down on it vigorously. Two comments.
1. Why would I want to?
2. No thank you.