Dahlias. Deformed dogs. Scots pines.

1 Oct

Traffic sizzles along the street outside on a delightful day of soft refreshing rain. Shopping can wait until after noon. It is blogging time again.

On one trip back to England, one of my dear siblings saw where our grandmother’s shop, selling everything from bobbins to bacon, had been. The windows were replaced with blank boarding. Later, when I visited the location on vacation in 2009, I saw that, the two houses that had once been converted to a double-fronted general shop were back! No sign that a shop had served people for decades on the site, remained.

In our district of York, Rowntrees Park still exists. It is better than ever because the ugly bushes which blocked the view (presenting a danger of ambush) were cleared out in the 1970s. Originally, Rowntrees chocolate company bought the river-side boggy land to prevent their competitor Terrys from building a new factory there.

It did not prevent Terrys from building near the York Racecourse. Now some foreign financial concern owns all the old brand names of (I believe Quaker-founded) English chocolate products, Cadburys, Rowntrees, Frys, and Terrys, and the work is all overseas. Even Nestles themselves are swallowed up.

Many hours of our childhoods were spent in Rowntrees Park. I am told by the same sibling, that when the Dahlias were cut down at the end of their season, flowers used to be handed out to members of the public. I had forgotten that, or never knew it. What a decent tradition!

Here in Bournemouth downtown we have the long Central Gardens curving from the Bournemouth Pier into the hinterland. Nice enough they are, in their way, but bushes present the same hiding place for lowlife.

Far more impressive is Compton Acres, across the border in Poole. And in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, is a similar, well-known, magnificent feature called Butchart Gardens. I am told that, right now the dahlias are in full bloom.

I am in favour in principle of being sensible, and I would have liked to have been sensible in practice, in my life, rather than only in preaching. I believe it is sensible to admire working dogs immensely (even if their personal habits are even more revolting than my own) whilst supporting the sterilisation of deliberately deformed breeds of dogs.

I enthuse over trees in their right place: the forest; but I insist that they ought to be chopped down where fools have planted them near houses and roads. Towering and rotting Scots pines in Bournemouth and Poole are a dreadful danger at present.

Shops like my grandmother’s are a thing of the past. Supermarkets now have their day, and a good thing too. It is all part of life’s rich pattern, as Beryl Reid’s comic character Monica used to put it.

Every thing in its time and season, as Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young sang. They are quoting, of course. Some ancient dude wrote about it in one of the small books of the tribe of Yehuda. And the Jewish guru Yehoshua of Nazareth would have been familiar with it. Now THERE is a man that would have made a marvellous blogger. The same was not true, in my view, of those who swooped in and CLAIMED to represent him posthumously. 

I am in favour of flowers, however artificially they be ranked in a border, being available for folk to walk along by, for the ease of sadness and the renewal of gladness.


One Response to “Dahlias. Deformed dogs. Scots pines.”

  1. Vincent October 2, 2010 at 11:45 am #

    Actually, Nestle (I can’t find my keyboard’s letters with accents) was ALWAYS Swiss – well, HALF Swiss. It was started by two yanks and a Swiss bloke, as an Anglo-Swiss concern.

    In Britain, it was pronounced “nestle” (which is actually what Nestle [with accent] means) until the Swiss decided to intervene.

    But “Nesslays Milky Bar” STILL sounds PANTS!

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