Thursday, 3 April 2008


This little geranium has come out, now it's in the warmth of the kitchen; the label says plain pink, but I think this is so pretty against the fresh green of the foliage. I have two on the front windowsill.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

A Year in Tibet

This is a truly fabulous and important programme of what is left of a way of life that will soon be gone forever. BBC4's series about life for ordinary Tibetan people under Chinese rule. A very well-timed airing too, with the Beijing olympics coming up, and the recent terrible troubles in Lhasa and other places. It's all done good from a point of view of getting Tibet in the national and international eye, but *will anything happen*????? This has been going on since 1951, with the world turning a blind eye to the appalling atrocities committed by the Chinese in the name of making Tibet an autonomous region of China. My attentionw as first drawn to it back in 1987; we had just moved into our first house,a nd I was confronted with truly awful picture of Tibetan monks being beaten during a peaceful and non-violent protest. I immediately joined the Free Tibet Campaign, which I have supported ever since, and various other Tibet related charities over the years. Shootings, children being given guns and told to shoot their parents, fleeing refugees shot and left for dead int he mountain passes as they try to escape, enforced sterilisation of Tibetan women, ethnic cleansing of huge proportions, the decimation of thousand of cultural artefacts, refusal to respect their religion and religious rights and beliefs, destruction of hundreds on monasteries, torture and rape and worse of nuns and minks - I could go on. The Dalai Lama has offered to go to China for talks, but I fear this will come to nothing. When he dies, that will be the end of Tibet, I fear, and the country will be taken over wholesale by the Chinese. I live in dread of that day, and feel genuine distress and fear for Tibet, her people and her future.

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

The cruellest month

April is the cruellest month, breeding

Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing

Memory and desire, stirring

Dull roots with spring rain.

T S Eliot, The Waste Land

April already, quarter of the way through the year now; very spring-like outside, but a bit blowy.

The cuckoo

Traditional sayings fail to agree on which day of April the cuckoo should arrive, but the month itself is not disputed. "The cuckoo comes in April, and stays the month of May; sings a song at midsummer, and then goes away". There are numerous superstitions relating to the bird - girls may ask it when they will marry, or old men when they will die, and teh calls that followed indicated the number of years they must wait. On hearing the first cuckoo, for prosperity you should turn or jingle any money in your pocket, and to avoid a year if illness and idleness you should get up and run. If the call comes from your right, you will have good luck, but if you are standing on bare earth you will be dead within twelve months (cheery stuff, eh? :0) ). It is possible to see cuckoos throughout the UK, although they are more prevalent in central and southern England; unfortunately their numbers have declined in recent years.

Monday, 31 March 2008

Last day of March..........

.... and a beautiful one so far too. Well, the am dram thing was a bit shambolic; got there all prepared to help out, but due to a lack of communication and unclear e-mails, turns out we were not needed after all. So, we sat in at the backa nd watched the production, and very good it was too - good sets and costumes, excellent acting, humourous play - Lettice and Lovage. Someone is after Bean to have a small part in the next production too, so that's good. As a result, we were able to stay at home on the Friday and Saturday nights. usual Friday things on Friday, got the little blue and white hen at the tip, along with a good Christmas craft book; also a very useful galvanised pipe-fed drinker which is destined for the goat pen later on. The sandwich plate is the one I got at the boot sale last week, so pretty. Saturday was Guild day - the talk was "Heartfelt" by felt worker Teresa Searle

Nice work, very colourful, lovely embroidered felt applique pieces. The full length coats were stunning in the slides. Restricted myself to two skeins of wool from the sales table! Got details of an interesting vintage fabric etc sale coming up in Poundbury, so inveigled OH into taking a day off and pootling up there - garden centre and pub nearby! That means I can go to the Guild committee meeting later that day too, so lots of birds there.

Yesterday was lovely - like summer - so spent most of the day out int he garden - details on the garden blog if you are interested. I need to get out there with the camera again, lots coming up all over the place.

Bean is off for a life model session this morning with an art group over the other side of Dorchester - should be fun, and she gets paid for it! Housework for me, then a bit outside I hope, interspersed with washing.....