Snip­pets of daily life come to light

Herald Express - - Letters & Opinion -

RE­CENTLY, I’d be­gun to won­der if it was just me think­ing that the press, ra­dio and tele­vi­sion news had be­come mostly neg­a­tive. Surely, I thought, there are some ‘happy’ things go­ing on in the world, apart from tragedies and dis­as­ter head­lines the me­dia seem to be­lieve hold peo­ple’s at­ten­tion?

How­ever, fol­low­ing a re­cent moan from the ol’ sailor, my lady drew my at­ten­tion to a dif­fer­ent sec­tion of the press. She qui­etly said: “Read the let­ters sec­tion, mis­ter, where or­di­nary folk put pen to pa­per to tell us about nor­mal things in life. ”

So I did, and as al­ways, she was right. Mem­bers of the pub­lic write var­i­ous let­ters about ev­ery­day events that de­scribe their per­sonal feel­ings and within each let­ter comes across a real life story.

***

We’re fast ap­proach­ing the time of the year when the na­tion qui­etly re­mem­bers those who sac­ri­ficed their lives, so that fu­ture gen­er­a­tions might live in free­dom. This year it ap­pears in cer­tain sec­tions re­mem­brance ser­vices will con­cen­trate more on the First World War, where mil­lions died in the bit­ter con­flict be­tween 1914 and 1918 ... yet an­other pe­riod of com­plete po­lit­i­cal in­san­ity. The Brix­ham Mis­sion Com­mu­nity to­gether with the Bri­tish Le­gion have or­gan­ised not one, but sev­eral non-de­nom­i­na­tional ser­vices on Satur­day, No­vem­ber 10, to com­mem­o­rate the end of the First World War.

But first, on Wed­nes­day, No­vem­ber 7, the Bri­tish Le­gion’s lo­cal an­nual fes­ti­val of re­mem­brance ser­vice will be held at Higher Brix­ham’s St Mary’s Church at 7.30pm. Both the BOMVC and the town band will take part and once again the com­mu­nity will show their to­tal re­spect, I’m sure.

On No­vem­ber 10 there will be ser­vices at Brix­ham’s All Saint’s Church at 10am, at noon at Churston’s St Mary’s, fol­lowed by an­other at the Barn Chapel in Galmp­ton, at 2pm, Kingswear’s St Thomas at 4pm and at Cow­town’s St Mary’s church at 7pm.

I’m told the five ser­vices on the 10th will not be of­fi­cial re­mem­brance fes­ti­vals, but an op­por­tu­nity for peo­ple to re­mem­ber the fallen. Which­ever ser­vice you might at­tend ‘We Shall Re­mem­ber Them!’

***

Cer­tain sec­tions of the me­dia tell us that we’ve al­most be­come a na­tion with com­pul­sive habits. Ac­cord­ing to them we can’t sur­vive the day un­less we have a mo­bile phone close at hand.

Young­sters, the mid­dle-aged and even pen­sion­ers, ap­par­ently start and end the day grasp­ing this modern tech­nol­ogy, which is able to make con­tact with all parts of the world. Walk­ing around our streets it’s pretty ev­i­dent scores of folk, es­pe­cially teenagers, seem to be glued to their mo­biles and it’s amaz­ing there are not more ac­ci­dents.

A friend told me about a din­ner party he’d at­tended a few weeks ago, and was sit­ting be­side a very at­trac­tive woman. Be­fore and dur­ing the meal she never said a word to him, but ev­ery few min­utes kept check­ing her phone, called some­one, or sent a mes­sage. Dur­ing dessert and fed up with be­ing ig­nored he po­litely asked her: “Ex­cuse me, but could we have a few words?” Her re­ply was: “Yes, of course, just let me have your num­ber!” I know now why I don’t own a mo­bile phone.

***

Last week, at­tend­ing a con­cert at St An­drew’s church in Paignton turned out to be a les­son about singing and sad­ness! To aid the St An­drew’s church funds, Brix­ham’s Male Voice Choir and women from the port’s Quay Har­mony Group had given up their Satur­day night to en­ter­tain Paignton res­i­dents.

The sad­ness was caused by the fact both choirs out­num­bered the au­di­ence. In a place of wor­ship that must seat a cou­ple of hun­dred peo­ple there were less than 50 in the au­di­ence. I’m not sure what went wrong, per­haps a lack of pub­lic­ity or there might have been other events tak­ing place in Paignton. How­ever the lack of bums-on-seats didn’t af­fect the stan­dard of singing and I’m sure those mem­bers of the pub­lic went home with melodies ring­ing in their ears. The evening made me proud of the ded­i­ca­tion and the tal­ent of Brix­ham’s mu­si­cians. Well done.

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