Tuesday, 3 September 2013


Another month of unbelievable sunshine and restless nights when the temperatures refused to drop.
My own month has been a mixture of magical drives across the moors with the sun shimmering on distant horizons and heather beginning to turn purple at each side of the road; or to the sea, glorious blue skies over sea and sands, seen against golden cornfields creating a scene to remember when the days shorten and the temperatures drop.
Then there was that sudden impulse that sent me to the Edinburgh Festival and the Book Fair to absorb the special atmosphere of books and book-lovers; to have lunch in the Charlotte Bronte marquee and share a table with ladies who were ready to discuss their favourite authors. And afterwards to enjoy the street entertainers of the Fringe Festival; the gymnasts and the jugglers and the man who stood on his head to earn a living but that head was in a bucket!

On a wider scene there has been the 50th anniversary of Dr Martin Luther King’s
“I have a Dream” speech. Radio 4 interviewed a lady who’d been present that day as a 12 year old child.  She remembered being taken to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington by her mother who was a domestic worker for wealthy white families and often took the little girl with her.  She told how she was allowed to play with the children of those families but their dolls were white. Hers were black! Since then she’s felt that people ought to be known for what they are and not for the colour of their skin.

On August 30th came the unexpected death of Seamus Heaney, aged 74.  He was a Nobel prize-winner and said to be ‘The greatest Irish poet since W.B.Yeats. A giant of the literary world.’  ‘A poet to be grateful for; a generous and gentle person who wore his wisdom very lightly.’

And yesterday, September 1st , veteran broadcaster Sir David Frost died suddenly from a heart attack whilst holidaying on a cruise ship. He was also 74.

They were wonderful people who will be greatly missed.