Thursday, 27 February 2014

February Blues.

February is my least favourite month.  Historically my most traumatic.  Meteorologically either very cold or very wet, and in any case grey.

Also, it is physically a month when all the winter's ills seem to have drained every bit of energy.

I try not to blog in February, aware that other people with real problems do not want to be pulled down further.

So I read other blogs. comment when appropriate and keep a low profile.

In the shower this morning, the sun blazing through the window I was aware that this was a very un-February-like day.  It is or rather was, also my wedding anniversary.

It would have been the forty-third.

Oddly, since John's death in 2009 I have never once remembered our wedding anniversary and have no idea what alerted me today to its significance.

Watching a great spotted woodpecker on the peanut feeder it occurred to me that all the little similar fleeting things  which have always given me huge pleasure, still do.  I still love watching birds, fussing neighbourhood cats, basking in brief shafts of sunlight.

As a moody introspective teenager when I complained to my mother that there never seemed to be any great blinding flash of happiness in my life.

She replied that such moments are very rare and do not constitute real happiness, adding that learning to find pleasure and joy in very small everyday things was the key to real happiness.

As always, she was right.

Seeking a picture to illustrate this post I found among my garden photos the lovely apricot bloom of "Just Joey", taken in a year when it flourished.  It too has dwindled to almost nothing, but has had its time of beauty and the picture was taken just then.

Life seems very flat at the moment, but I know it is just a grey patch and things will improve again soon.

Last Sunday our St Mary's choir sang "The heavens are telling" from Haydn's great "Creation".  We were not very well rehearsed and it is quite difficult, but made, I thought, quite a good job of it.

The feedback was generally good, with one lovely lady with whom I share the 'meeters and greeters' desk telling me she wanted very much to clap at the end, while inevitably, there was one person who 'hated' it, said it was too loud and too long.

One person's lovely day and another one's awful day.

Seems February is quite a mixed month.

Monday, 3 February 2014

The Times They Are A-Changing

One of the bonuses of being in interregnum (as we at St. Mary's have been since last August), is that we are privileged to see and hear a huge variety of clergy of all shapes and sizes officiating at the various services here.

We have been blessed by visits from the Archdeacon, the Bishop, the Dean and a dozen or so other Rev's from various local churches and semi-retired local ministers.

Some. (most), are in our own Anglo-Catholic tradition, others rather less so, and one particular individual from a very different one.

This can be illuminating, inspiring, or on occasion, somewhat disconcerting, but since we are assured by those in a position to know, that we are going to acquire an incumbent of our own persuasion - eventually - we must settle for what we are offered in the interim.

Change is all around us, and even the day-to-day running of the church is constantly shifting ground and altering time-honoured procedures in order to adapt.

In some ways it has brought us closer together as a community but in others cracks are appearing.

As so  many other people are looking at their roles whether paid or volunteer, I decided to make some changes of my own.

The Space - listening ear drop-in organisation which is a flourishing part of St Mary's will now have the benefit of more of my time (poor souls, they won't know what's hit them).  While the parish office will see rather less of me (cheers resound).

Additionally I will now be a one-morning a week meeter and greeter, and hopefully will have a bit of training in the rich history of the church so I can officially bore any unwary visitors who make the mistake of asking questions.

The choir has not yet objected to my bass-baritone groaning on Sundays, so that will continue until they do.

Oh, and my face is at last clear of eczema so I look nearly human again.

All we need now is for the weather to change while there is still some of the country not underwater and joy will be unconfined.