I hadn’t given Thai orchids a moment of thought. It would be wrong to say I don’t care. But most of any care I have over the lack of orchids from anywhere, would be to do with loss of income for those whose livelihoods depend on them.
Until Monday evening we didn’t know whether Son would be able to turn up here this morning, and for a while it looked as if he’d be one of the lucky ones, with flight not yet cancelled and due to arrive 15 minutes after Manchester airport reopens Tuesday morning (if it does). But it was not to be, which I suppose should have been expected after he has narrowly avoided other air traffic disruptions this academic year. Son has a certain talent for ending up with travel disruption where his education is concerned, so why would now be any different?
But let’s return to the subject of Eyjafjallajökull, which Son can pronounce almost to perfection after his year in that place where he’s stuck for the moment. The Resident IT Consultant was amused at the Icelander interviewed on air on Thursday when it all began, because he reported that ‘the ways were closed and the cows were in the houses’. Of course they were.
Son has found himself increasingly annoyed with the BBC on this subject, and has resorted to Icelandic news on the internet. And as the orchids above indicate, I’m a little intrigued at how our trusted newspapers are reporting things.
It’s worth covering the repercussions of businesses going under, and possible shortages of tomatoes, say. But the Thai orchids can’t be unimportant only at Witch Towers, surely? Or the pre-washed salads. Convenient (and yucky, when you think of it), but hardly essential. I noted to my surprise that elusive ingredients for medicine is bad for the pharmaceutical companies. I’d have imagined it’d be worse for those who are ill and may need the medicine to survive. And I’m not going to lie sleepless if Robert Downey can’t make his film premiere next week. Will you?
Why do papers report such silly news? I’m the first to enjoy Lucy Mangan or Tim Dowling poking fun at stuff in an entertaining manner, but who checks what gets into the news pages?
It would appear that foreigners can sometimes get things right.
I know that as one of them I can never lay claim to the kind of past many of my readers have with Ladybird books. You sort of imbibed them with the first milk, and a person can only have one past. At least most of us. Lucy Mangan has been spot on again, writing about her Ladybird collection, and being generous enough to concede that her otherwise hopeless husband also has an excellent Ladybird past. Wow.
On my first visit to these shores I bought one book. Aged ten, and with one year of school English behind me, I wasn’t well placed to read much at all. But Mother-of-witch let me buy one book, which we then laboured over together. There were many tempting ones in the shop, but I settled on something solid about two children on a farm. It personified my early image of English children, with their sweet sensible shoes, boys in shorts, with mothers who bake cakes and fatherly fathers.
So I tried to learn English with Ladybird, although by the time I really could read the book, it was far too childish for me and I had moved on to Agatha Christie.