Like a small boy in a primitive African village I have experienced the delight of having something as monumental as a well being sunk and water being readily available. We are now connected to Superfast broadband and I write to you at a speed of 30mb/s. Our recent speed for many years has been 1.3 mb/s. Yes, I know, not a big deal for most of the UK but a big deal here in Acaster Malbis. Yippee!
Recent excitement has included lots of concerts, which you’ll find reviews elsewhere. Without doubt this is a hobby of the older person. I survey the audiences to feel quite young! I think many of these artists might supplement their income by getting sponsorship by hair dye or vitamin supplement purveyors. I suppose we have the time, often midweek, to get out and get down, as well as the disposable income as the nation subsidises the idle baby boomers (that’s a joke btw…)
A weekend away in Bakewell was delightful. Anna rented a swish property and Cost Centre One and Two descended with respective partners. In the photo are Catherine (sister in law) and Geoff (brother in law) imbibing with us at a local hostelry. In fact I was pampered as on one evening Katrina and Matt sprung into action with homemade curries and on the second night Sophie and Harry made the evening meal of fajitas.
One outing was at the end of April to catch Danny Baker at York’s Grand Theatre. This was well before his horrific racist Tweet (a chimpanzee walking hand in hand with a man and woman). I’d read both his books and heard him on the radio over the years and knew him to be an engaging raconteur. The evening was fine if you wanted to hear him regurgitate his books again line by line.
He’s quite confident that he is hilarious and rolls along alluding to a history of celebrity relationships, theft, Value Added Tax payment evasion and a fairly dissolute lifestyle that has, on occasion, caused him considerable upheaval. I also know his Tweets, which often recycle old photos and YouTube clips. They are often profane and mainly about football and music.
The foul Tweet in question was an error. I don’t think he's a racist. However, not only was that selection an error of judgement, apparently to lampoon the attendant media, but why lampoon the event in any case? The birth of a child is a very happy event that is celebrated by everyone. (Harry and Meghan seemed so elated it was touching). Why have the error of judgement to be negative and then select a photograph that, in fairness, should end a career?
A drive to the East coast saw us go to Saltburn by the Sea. We’ve been before quite recently but this time I ventured into a Sue Ryder charity shop where I bought my second record. It was in 1966 when I entered this shop, albeit it it was a record store, and bought “Strangers In The Night” by Frank Sinatra as a birthday present for my mother. The ladies in the shop helped me with the premises’ history although they only knew this through other older Saltburn residents.
(First record? “The Young Ones” by Cliff Richard from Vallance’s. This establishment was on The Headrow in Leeds and it must have been 1962 or 63 and I recollect sitting outside in the car whilst someone popped inside to buy it).
The wonderful Tour de Yorkshire came to the county and brought the spectators out. There has been worse weather for the event but it does usually bring cold and wet. I feel for these pencil thin athletes who fly in from hotter climes to don leggings, raincoats and thick gloves. It did come within 6 miles of Chateau Ives but intermittent heavy rain saw me keep warm and dry in front of the TV to watch it. One of the genuine delights is seeing these stars zoom along roads or up hills I know so well in the county. To think Chris Froome’s tyres have covered the same piece of tarmac is terrific.
Lastly, as a nation we rightly worry about crime. Violent crime is truly shocking and the level of knife crime in London is an epidemic. To this end I’m always confused as to why millions of women, mostly middle aged or older, cannot get enough stabbing, shooting, sexual violence and general misery on TV. The best drama series for 2018 was “Killing Eve” according to the British Academy Television Awards. This light hearted romp was about a psychopathic assassin. Conveniently a beautiful young woman. In the mix although not the winner was “The Bodyguard”, again that dwelt on the near fatal attempts on a woman politician’s life. What’s wrong with you?