Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Grace is my middle name

Anyone who has read my blog for more than 2 or 3 years will be aware that I am more than averagely clumsy, accident prone, an injury magnet.

This morning, house tightly shuttered against last night's howling gales I looked out, saw that it was dry (then) and opened the back door.

Big mistake,  It flew out of my hand, crashed back against the tumble-dryer wall outlet and there was an ominous crash.

I looked at said piece of plastic - or what remains of it from previous crashes - and could see nothing.  Not really reassured, the noise had been considerable, I poked around the back door-step and found a large triangular object on the ground.

To cut it short, it was a lump of my cat-flap old and yellowed but still in place ten years after the demise of our last cat.  I now have a dilemma on my hands.

Since it is set into the door do I try to find someone who can locate and replace it with a similar one, though I have no plans to take on another cat, or do I have to replace the door (double glazing as well)?

As it stands the door is now vulnerable to access by any large strong animal or even, I suppose a small skinny burglar. To say nothing of possible weather damage.

Enough for  one day I thought, went to get my shower, stubbed my foot (yet again) and now have a nice navy-blue toe.

It hurts, is swollen and is about the tenth time I have performed this particular trick.

Is a suit of armour the answer, or should I  carry on regardless but take our personal injury insurance.

Answers and advice welcome.

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Prayer versus Performance

It is possible I may have raised this issue before but last Sunday's  eucharist reminded me forcibley that it is a very real bone of contention.

If, as I am, you are a life-long performer, old habits die hard.

Used to singing either as a soloist or as part of a group, member of a chorus or of a choir it seems normal to expect and receive applause after a performance.

Singing in a church choir is a very different kettle of fish, where music is an integral part of the service and some would say, a type of prayer in itself.

Therefore in the Anglican church the music 'happens', and is seamlessly absorbed into the liturgy with no recognition (at the time), though on occasions when we have sung particularly well, with a few compliments after the service.

On just a very few occasions - for example on Christmas Day - we have sometimes put in an extra item (The Halleluja Chorus) or something similar and received a huge volume of applause.

This is very heart-warming and is usually very welcome since this is after all, the culmination of a hefty programme of music over a lengthy and very tiring period of time.

Last Sunday, about one third of the choir turned up and for the anthem sang unaccompanied the work by Lully arranged by Bizet, known for choral purposes as "Far Away".  This we sang, though I say it  as shouldn't, very well indeed.

We were astounded by the reception, loud cheers and rapturous applause.

Although it was a lovely tribute it felt (for me anyway) completely out of place.

Which raises for me yet again, the old question.  Where does performance end and prayer begin?