The soaring cost of living means that we who live in the country side are beginning to be weighed down by it.
Rural living means that one needs a car even to get a pint of milk! The Mhinisteir’s job means that he does a lot of mileage. You need three hands to count the number of parishes that he is responsible for and church services are held in all the parishes. On top of that, the parishioners who are spread across the villages need pastoral visits and home communions to those who are housebound.
We also need heating oil to provide us with heating especially during the cold months. Did you know that heating oil is not monitored by Ofgem so there is no price cap? This just means that the supplier can mark up the price of oil which they have already done so since the war started.
Every Friday, I look forward to the postie bringing us the latest Church Times. I love reading the Church Times as it contains Church news from around the world. The last page of the newspaper is dedicated to interviews and they interview one person each week. It used to be very interesting but these days I just glance through.
Last Friday’s last page interview looked interesting and so I read it in full. However, I was groaning with irritation after I had completed reading the interview.
The reason for my groaning was this…. The interviewee claimed to be a Christian but when asked who she would like to be with if she was locked in a church. She answered that it would probably be Buddha as she believes that he came to understand the essence of existence better than most of us have, or ever will.
Is Christ not the BEST person to understand the essence of existence since he came down from heaven to take on human form?
Warning: This blogpost may not be suitable for dog lovers.
I am not a pet lover. I don’t mind dogs from a distance but I get slightly annoyed when I see them in church! I don’t know what it is with rural folk and dogs and why they feel obliged to bring them to church. By the way I have got absolutely no problem with guide dogs etc. For years, I lived in both urban and rural Scotland but no one has ever brought their dog to church. The dogs are usually waiting for their owners in the car. If you are reading this and have spotted dogs in other churches please do let me know so that I will know that this is not just a tradition in rural England.
Warning:If you are a dog owner and are still reading this, please refrain from sending me hate emails!🤣
The pandemic meant that dogs were forced to stay at home on Sundays but since the restrictions were lifted they have started coming to church again.
One Sunday, there were two instead of the usual one in one of the churches. I have never seen the second one before but I avoided eye contact with him and needless to say that I was the first one out of church after the service!
The unexpected news from Old Mrs Patel couldn’t have come at a worse time. We suddenly found ourselves with no newspaper delivery. In theory it all sounds well and good to be able to nip to the nearest newsagent to buy the daily newspaper but not so in practice as we will have to drive a distance to get the papers. Furthermore, the Mhinisteir hasn’t got the luxury of time while I don’t have the health for it.
Anyway, I decided to google “newspaper delivery” in our area and found a website. I sent them a random enquiry email and was absolutely delighted to receive a reply that yes, they could deliver!!!! Yippee!
NewsTeam Group is a national company and maybe the people for you if you are interested in having your newspaper delivered to your doorstep.
The Mhinisteir was out most days last week. Meetings, business lunches, wedding rehearsals etc which meant that he was late in returning to the vicarage. It also meant that I had a lot of time to myself as I didn’t have the pressure of trying to fit in meal times among things around his schedule so I decided to “sort” out my indoor plants.
I decided that I will be smarter and get this out of the way before the cleaner arrives so that she can tackle the spilled compost etc. I first had to get some compost from outside where it had been abandoned next to the coal bunker. I always keep the back door shut when I am working outside as I am afraid that “something” might slip in when I am not paying attending. Unfortunately on this day, I didn’t!
This is when paranoia set in. I was afraid that “something” had slipped in. I went around the house meowing like a cat hoping that any stray would come out that very minute! Honestly, who goes around their house meowing like a cat??????????????? Please don’t try this at home!!!!🤣
Anyway, nothing surfaced and by the time afternoon came I had completely forgotten about the “meowing” incident.
When the Mhinisteir came back in the evening, I heard him talking to someone at the door. He later told me that it was one of the neighbours whose cat has gone missing!!!!!!
Thankfully, the said cat hasn’t showed up inside the vicarage!
In 2019, our former vicar’s wife gave us a small pot of a peace lily plant. It has been thriving so well that the small pot has now yielded another 4 pots thanks to propagation. I just can’t believe how sturdy a plant it is because there have been times when I have forgotten to water it.
I remember reading that the plant itself among other things is good for purifying the air and promoting sleep. I might just put one in the bed room to see if it indeed promotes sleep.
The Mhinisteir and I live in rural England where 99.9% of our parishioners are “Brexiteers”. The wonderful thing about democracy is that we have freedom to choose so we have no problem with “Brexiteers”. Actually, we co-exist very well.
When we first moved here, we started buying a right wing broadsheet newspaper to better understand our parishioners and stuck with it until a month ago. We of course read the Private Eye, FT Weekend and the Sunday Times so that we will have different view points.
However, I gave myself a rude shock when I started dismissing “partygate”. I couldn’t believe that the newspaper was beginning to shape my thinking. I was disappointed with myself. I had a wee chat with the Mhinisteir about it and to my great relief he told me that he had been feeling the same way for a wee while so that is when we decided to cancel our subscription and change our newspaper subscription.
We get our credit card statements by post and so as usual we got the latest statement about 10 days ago. As I was going through the transactions, I spotted one for £169. I didn’t recognise it but assumed that the Mhinisteir probably had bought something since it is a joint card. On closer inspection, I noticed that it was a cartridge company and began to get a bit suspicious. I decided to ask the Mhinisteir about it and he was pretty certain that he hadn’t bought anything. I too was pretty sure that I hadn’t bought any ink cartridges.
I phoned John Lewis and spoke to someone from their fraud department. They were very helpful and said that they would investigate which they have now completed. They have since refunded the £169 for which I am grateful but this is the second time something like this has happened. The first was a few weeks ago when someone tried to use the card but thankfully got intercepted by the credit card company.
There was a national service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s cathedral to celebrate the platinum jubilee of Elizabeth II last Friday morning. The Mhinisteir and I were very keen to watch the service and decided that we will watch a delayed version in the evening once the Mhinisteir had finished work! Yes, the Mhinisteir was working on both days to catch up on paperwork.
Once we had our dinner and our baths, we settled in bed to watch the service online. Surely it must be online right? All I could find was hours and hours of who was coming and going but not the actual service itself! I soon discovered that the service was only available on BBC Iplayer. We don’t pay TV licence as we don’t own a television so we weren’t able to access BBC Iplayer. We could have accessed it illegally but we weren’t going to go down that route!
I was disappointed that the Church of England didn’t make the effort to make the service available online more freely.
We ended up catching up on Only fools and horses but even that was shortlived because Britbox was playing up so we just went to bed.