Rodmell and Southease

THROWAWAY SOCIETY: I viewed with horror on Sunday the news on TV about the amount of discarded tents and rubbish left behind at various festivals around the country. We really are a throwaway society, aren’t we? Surely it would help if, after their performances, the stars and celebrities that people come to see would appeal for people to clear their rubbish and take it home with them. They, let’s face it, are making a good living from entertaining people, so why not give something back, which costs nothing just a few moments’ speech to appeal to the fans. Who knows, it may have a good effect. I’m sounding a old and goody goody now, but when I was young, my friends and I were indoctrinated by our parents to appreciate people and possessions and if we went out for a picnic, we had to bring our rubbish home with us. Is it so hard in these modern times to do these simple acts?

SHOPPING: I am a great fan of Cotton Traders and order over the phone. I am always pleasantly surprised how efficient they are and also how prompt their delivery service is. I do, however, wonder about the way we buy goods now, and how good it is for our environment. High street shops are closing down at a fast rate, which means people are not out communicating and exercising, but are at home on computers, in some cases, buying goods online with money, they don’t have, getting into debt, as seen on TV recently, and roads are getting cluttered with large delivery lorries polluting the air and creating more and more cardboard, packaging coming from huge warehouses being built all over the country. The waste we create by buying online must be horrendous. It is of course a very convenient service for many who are elderly or disabled to have goods delivered, but I’m just waiting to see what opinions will be in the future when our high streets are dead places.

BOOKS: On a brighter note, people are buying books again, instead of being glued to their tablets. I go to Raystede Animal Centre at Ringmer quite often, and take knitted blankets that kind ladies in Rodmell knit for the animals. I also take clothes and other objects for sale in their shop. They sell lots of books there, and its lovely to see people spending time browsing there. I am always being told by my B&B clients that they love the amount of books on all subjects that I have. Many of my books I have illustrated, and get a copy each time from the people who have written them, plus I have also written some of them. A mechanical object it seems can’t beat the feel and smell of a book as well as the look of it.

OUR PUB: The Abergavenny Arms had a very successful evening on August 26 when their well was emptied for the first time in 20 years. It made several appearances in the press, on the radio and on TV and to date, the evening made over £1,000 and the 173kg of coins, aptly predicted by my neighbour Spencer Prosser, have yet to be sorted and valued. Thanks must surely go to Lucie and Jon who have run the pub for nearly six years and all their lovely staff. Our pub is the village hub and well loved and attended. Long may it reign as such. These days, when so many pubs are closing, ours must be doing something right.

RIDE AND STRIDE: Next Saturday, September 8, we have the Sponsored Bike Ride. Let’s hope it is a nice day and many people decide to do it.

WEEKENDS: I have to admit that I try to avoid going out at the weekends these days, unless it’s fairly local. The roads are horrendous, especially the road under the Downs to Ditchling, which is narrow and winding and it seems especially loved by large groups of cyclists, which frustrates drivers who do not have patience and take awful risks when overtaking. I’m surprised there aren’t more accidents on this road.