Several years ago, after our move to England, I found myself in an emotional turmoil. I found England to be very different. I am sure people who have had to move between countries will empathise with me.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with England or her lovely inhabitants. It was me. I was used to something strikingly different. If you have watched the Scottish drama Shetland, you will get a rough idea of what most of my married life was like on various islands. The joys of being married to a Vicar! To be thrust into a city was a culture shock, to say the least. Everything from finding new friends to getting a certain cut of meat from the butchers was difficult.
I needed to turn a corner and needed to do it fast before life became unbearable. That was when I decided to do something with an empty jam jar (a clean one!) and scraps of paper. Every time I prayed over something, I would also write it down on the scrap piece of paper and put it in the jar. Every Sunday evening, I would go through all the written prayers and remove the ones that have been answered. It was amazing how many scraps of paper I was removing from the jar every week! I was beginning to feel better again as I was reminded through this act that even though I was lonely, God never left me! By the time, we moved yet again, another three times actually, the jam jar got lost and I forgot all about it!
However, since the start of January 2022, I have resurrected this habit and am feeling the better for it!
In the Church of England, after all the demands of Christmas, clergy are expected to take a week off work immediately after Christmas in order to rest and recuperate.
In our case, superman the Mhinisteir decided to take his holidays at a later date in order to allow the assistant curate to go away on their post Christmas break. I have often wondered why the assistant curate always gets the first choice when it comes to holidays🤐!
Anyway, the good news is as of today we are officially on our post Christmas break. Later this morning, we are leaving for our usual hideout and hope to be away for a few days.
I have yet to decide if I am going to continue blogging during this period but if there is a lapse you will know why!
Over the last 10 days or so, I have not enjoyed our daily newspapers at all. It has been filled with nothing but British politics. The country has been engulfed in the revelation that the British prime minister did not follow his own rules and instead held parties in 10 Downing Street when the whole country was in lockdown at different times in 2020 and 2021. It has also been revealed that there was one such party on the eve of HRH Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral!
I for one do not understand what the fuss is all about? I am not a fan of the prime minister but he is our prime minister because the majority voted for him! It is the same people who are now grumbling. It is not Boris who has changed. He is still the same old Boris who has an aversion to the truth and fumbles along.
The public are also angry that the PM was having a party when Her Majesty the Queen was mourning the death of her husband and that because of his decision making she had to sit all by herself at the funeral. At this point, I would like to remind the public that at least she had the opportunity to be with her husband in his dying moments and that she was able to be present at his funeral, something which many many people were denied!!!!!
This of course has given a field day to the opposition. Sadly, I don’t like them very much either😁!
We are very privileged to have our newspapers delivered straight to the Vicarage door and so just like every other month our monthly newspaper bill for December arrived a few days before Christmas.
Since I am in charge of the Vicarage household, the Mhinisteir passed me the bill without even looking at it. One look and I knew the figures were incorrect. We had been charged twice.
The Mhinisteir rang Old Mrs Patel who runs the newsagents to enquire. In case you are wondering why I didn’t ring Old Mrs P; she has a soft spot for the Mhinisteir and I didn’t think she liked to hear from me😁!
Unfortunately, it was the son who answered the phone and so wasn’t very helpful. He claimed to have not received the cheque for the previous month. Strange because since the pandemic, I have been paying them by cheque and there has been no trouble until now.
Anyway, I wrote out a new cheque with the new figure. Just then, the Mhinisteir reminded me to cancel the earlier cheque. Cancel a cheque? It was then that I realised that I had never cancelled a cheque ever before! How do I do it?
Thankfully and unusually it was a very straightforward process. All I had to do was to contact the bank in my case the Royal Bank of Scotland and give them the cheque number, the amount and the intended recipient.
Who would have thought that it would be this easy to cancel a cheque?
Have you heard of the latest craze that is sweeping the world? It is called Wordle and is a web based once a day word game. Wordle reminds me of the old board game Mastermind but this is using words.
I only learnt about Wordle when I read about it in a blog post by a fellow blogger who blogs at View from a Teapot.
I am not someone who follows the latest craze but somehow I just couldn’t get the name Wordle out of my head and so had to google it! I have since played it four times. The first time was a total flop but the last three was a resounding success.
Thankfully, it is not a game that one can easily get addicted to but it gives you plenty of bragging rights! 😁
It was reported in the most recent Church Times that a new Archbishop’s secretary for appointments has been found. For the uninitiated, the secretary of appointments is the one who manages the process for the appointment of bishops, deans, and other senior posts in the Church of England.
Some people within the Church of England are a little surprised by the appointment as the post which has been vacant for only about 2 months doesn’t seem to have been advertised. Furthermore they are irked by the revelation that it is an internal appointment!
Personally, I find it strange that in the Church of England, clergy have to apply for new positions; something which I am not familiar with because in Scotland the clergy receive what is known as a “call”. Meanwhile administrative positions appear to require no such applications.
I dread that what happens inside the Church mirrors the secular government!
After almost 8 days without heat, the vicarage boiler was finally fixed on Thursday night 🥳.
As I write this, I am back in my study which is nice and warm again. The one week without heat was very trying especially when the power too went off one of the days. However, I cannot say in good conscience that I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy😁!!!! Quite frankly I don’t know how some people can say that; it makes them sound so noble🙄.
I don’t like cats. In fact, this photo terrifies me but I felt obliged to include a photo of one and this was the “friendliest” I could find on Pexel! I am terrified of cats. They remind me of tigers. There is just something about their eyes.
On Saturday, I found myself rereading the final pages of The Witch of Wyckhadden, the 9th book of the Agatha Raisin series. You see, the night before, I had finished reading that book and had moved on to the 10th book in the series. It was then that I realised that Agatha only has the 2 cats, Hodge and Boswell when she moves to Norfolk in the Fairies of Fryham. What happened to Scrabble? Scrabble was the third cat that she had “adopted” while in Wyckhadden and she had definitely brought Scrabble back with her to Carsely but strangely there was no mention of Scrabble in the Fairies of Fryham.
Ach well I might never find out but then again Scrabble might resurface later in the series.
In the latest Private Eye under Eye Classifieds, someone has advertised their services as a professional mourner. I had to read it twice! I think I know what a professional mourner does even though I have not met one before but is there a need for such a person?
I have often heard from the Mhinisteir as to how some bereaved families prefer not to turn up at the funeral service in Church or at the crematorium. The reasons given are usually family feud or simply too busy to turn up!
To hire a professional mourner appears to be just taking it a step too far but maybe there is a perfectly simple reason as to why there is a need to hire one!
In the same Private Eye, under Dumb Britain, I spotted the following:-
Tipping Point, ITV
Ben Shephard: Ciabatta bread originated in which European country?
In the last few months, I have been noticing several emails in my inbox from a certain sender with the following subject heading ” Go on DM, don’t be selfish!” I was a little shocked when I saw it for the first time but now I just ignore these emails.
These emails are from Twitter. I do have a Twitter account which I was forced to set up when we were still living in the Scottish Highlands. We had some serious issues with our British Telecom phone line and because they were not taking our complaint seriously, someone suggested getting in touch with them via Twitter as that would shame them into taking action. It worked! Since then, my Twitter account has remained dormant.
According to the email from Twitter, it is selfish of me not to be wanting to make “new friends”. How dare they?
In our present climate, mental health is a big issue. Emails with irresponsible subject headings such as this actually have the potential of causing harm to a sufferer.