Posted by: lucylastic | July 2, 2007

A weekend to remember and reminisce

OK – Hands up all those who watched the Diana concert last night?  Did you love it?  Or would you maybe not touch it with a barge pole?  I was always a big Diana fan – I felt we had a lot in common, (how bizarre is that) because way, way back in the early 1980’s we got married within a few days of one another and also had birdays within even fewer days of one another, (and only a year apart).  Tenuous I know, but she was such big and glamorous news back then, that any small link was to be treasured – though in retrospect, my mother’s insistence that I too wore a tiara at my wedding was perhaps a little over the top.  Especially as it was purchased in John Lewis and not some well-worn, (but lovingly preserved) and extremely valuable family heirloom.  Still, it’s been languishing in a cupboard for over 25 years now, so must be approaching heirloom status, even if it’s value is little changed from the original £7.75!!!!  There really hadn’t ever been anyone like Diana in the Royal family before.  Of course, time tells lots of different stories, but one thing the bits of last night’s concert that I got to see taught me, is that she was, first and foremost, a mum to two boys, who clearly love her very much.  To lose a parent whilst still a child is a massive body blow – I know, I’ve seem it first hand with my own boys who were only 9 and 6 respectively when their dad died very unexpectedly.  But to have to play it out in public and with the media screaming conspiracy theories on a daily basis must be harrowing indeed.  I can only take my hat off to William and Harry – I think they did extremely well and finally showed a picture of their mother as they want her remembered – and that deserves some respect.  And I do like to sing along to an Andrew Lloyd Webber medley, whatever the occasion.

It was a very strange weekend in a lot of ways – sometimes they just go by in a flash – but this one seemed to linger, which was pleasant – although the weather was unpredictable to say the least.  In my part of the world, (sunny Swindon), Friday evening was gloroious – a sky which lightened with glowing copper and yellow tones as the evening progressed – making sitting in the garden sipping a glass of chilled sparkly an extra-special treat, followed by a slow descent into dusk and beautiful pink and red tones as the sun went down.  A night that just begged for a bit of internal reflection and an acknowledgement of how lucky I am.  Saturday was a different kettle of fish altogether – trying to time a much needed dash to the shops between showers and downpours wasn’t easy, and the poor Tesco delivery man had really mistimed it – apparently, every time he finished a delivery, it stopped, but every time he arrived at the next house, the heavens opened and he got wetter and wetter wheeling the trolley up and down.  I felt doubly bad, as I had opted for my shopping to be delivered ‘without bags’ – this week’s contribution to saving the planet by yours truly – which meant that it took about 3 times as long to unload as usual and delivery man was surely 3 times wetter than he needed to be!!!  I am not sure it was worth it to have accumulated 16 ‘green points’, especially as I have no idea what I can get with 16 ‘green points’.  If it’s a new car, complete with bio fuel system, then it may be worth it, but I suspect it’s a warm, glowing feeling and not a lot else.  It’s hard to be green, isn’t it?

Talking of ‘being green’, there was an interesting Money Programme special last Thursday evening called ‘how green is your high street’?  It seemed to be at great pains to firstly point out all the things that the big high street chains are doing to become more ethical and green and then slagging them off for not doing enough and not doing it faster.  In fact, the variety of initiatives is huge – from simple things like reducing packaging to innovative installations of solar panels, more effective refrigeration and reducing fresh items to those only obtainable locally.  I felt the slagging off was somewhat unfair, as not many months ago, the issue was a much smaller proportion of our ‘mindshare’ than it has become recently and it takes time for big organisations to change direction – if they are going to do it properly.  And let’s face it, if consumers weren’t prepared to pay silly prices for strawberries in December, or cassavas in July, then they wouldn’t stock them for long. 

Thoughts of shopping and green-ness over, I was looking forward to some entertainment at the weekend.  Swindon has long had a tradition of excellent quality, ‘grass roots’ events in it’s local community, what a shame then that the vast majority of this year’s ‘Old Town Festival’ was washed out from it’s venue at the ‘Swindon Bowl’ and much of the planned activity cancelled beacuse of the rain.  With the latest predictions from weather gurus suggesting that we will be getting more of the same sort of weather in the years to come, we need to develop some robust ‘Plan B’s’ – maybe just the building of a decent rain cover would be a start…………….the bowl is in a type of ampitheatre and I am sure that a tent-like roof could be constructed at very little cost.  I am available to draw plans if required……………….

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