Sunday, 8 June 2014

The way you see things!

Up the road from our house is the local cricket and bowling club. The car park isn’t very big so people who want to watch the cricket tend to park under the trees on the grass verge/pavement at the side of the road. This is fine. Well, actually, no, it’s not fine if you fancy walking up the road because you have to walk IN the road. Just a little inconvenient, not to say dangerous. 

My real gripe, however, is with the litter they leave behind. You might think they would get out of their cars and go down to the cricket club for a drink and a snack. But no, that would be too sensible. Instead they sit in their cars or, if the weather is good enough for them, alongside their cars and consume McDonald’s, pre-packed sandwiches, huge packets of crisps, cans of assorted drinks and those throwaway paper cups of coffee. 

The trouble is they leave the evidence behind them. Under one of the trees at the moment, along with other assorted detritus, there is one of those throw-away barbecue kits. You know the kind of thing: a metal foil tray with a grill on top. They even provide the food to barbecue I think. You light it, cook the food, eat the food and throw away the barbecue kit. Except that these barbi-lovers have left it under the tree. How hard is it to pack up your rubbish and take it away? There’s even a litter bin just by the car park! 

I wonder what the cricket club thinks of all this. After all they are missing out on the custom from these litter louts. 

According to various sources, the British are increasingly a nation of racist fatties. Apparently the proportion of Britons who admit to being prejudiced against immigrants has risen considerably in recent years. I find myself wondering if maybe it’s also becoming more acceptable to admit to such sentiments and this is what the statistics reflect. Just a thought! 

As for the fatties, we are probably the fattest nation in Europe or so we are told. Well, we’re not all the fattest in Europe but our average size is the biggest. What a sad thing to be best at! I have recently read about a 10 year old who weighs 14 stone and a 5 year old who weighs 10 stone. How do you pick up for a cuddle a child who weighs as much as an adult and more than some? Needless to say both these children have ended up in the care of social services. It makes you wonder if our society is somehow broken. At my most pessimistic I wonder if it can be mended! 

I listened this morning to Tamara Rojo, the ballerina, artistic director of the English National Ballet, talking on Desert Island Discs. Born in Canada of Spanish parents, she speaks excellent English with a delightful Spanish accent; “words” is pronounced to rhyme with “swords”, for example. At one point she expressed the view that her generation of Spaniards is probably the most educated, the best educated in Spain because their parents so much wanted them to succeed – to have the chance to go to university, to learn languages, to get on in life. It seems to have worked for her. 

According to journalist Kirstie Allsopp, on the other hand, girls should not go to university straight from school but should get a job, save some money, find a husband and have a baby while still in their twenties. This is all to do with fertility and the problem that young women are increasingly having of waiting too long to have babies because they need to finish their studies and establish themselves in their careers. Kirstie Allsopp reckons you can go back to studying at any age. Which is, of course, true but her view doesn’t take into account meeting a like-minded someone to be your life partner and the father of your babies. I’ve come across a number of women who had babies young and returned to studying later in life, only to find that suddenly they didn’t have anything in common with their life partner and father of their babies. Maybe Kirstie Allsopp doesn’t intend women to have a life partner. 

I really don’t know quite where she’s coming from. Besides, I don’t think she’s advocating this for everyone; she simply said that that was the advice she would give her daughter. I do know, however, that our daughter had her babies young and is now, in her thirties, combining part-time (almost full-time) work with studying and looking after said babies, now rather bigger, and it’s not easy! 

In any case, it’s all down to how you see things!

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