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A Timely Message




16.05.20 – Darrell Priestley

While we while away the hours at home, I’d like to bang a gong for all of you who have been doing fun, kind, imaginative, challenging or other wonderful things to help yourself and the people you care about endure the enforced home leave. Some of the children I teach have been ploughing through a surprising amount of school work their teachers have set them. Meanwhile, parents working from home while simultaneously helping with their childrens’ education have been absolute stars; having to learn to do their own roles remotely, at the same time they have somehow found the capacity to support their children in continued learning, which cannot have been easy, and all this while keeping house and home and trying to make sure that everyone is happy!

It occured to me the other day that, having spent a long career in performing and teaching music, not since my early teens have I ever spent much more than a dozen evenings in a row at home, and only then when on holiday from work to do home based projects like gardening and decorating. Evenings at home have been marvelous, all the better for having previously been so rare. Looking on the bright side, because you have to, we are all fortunate that this event has coincided with a wonderful time of year, with spring in the newly clean and fresh air, sunny days, longer evenings and lighter nights. It would have been much tougher in the depths of winter.

There’s a line from the song ‘Oh What a Beautiful Morning’ from Oklahoma, which goes ”The corn is a high as an elephant’s eye”, and this year I am trying find out if that might be true. On 5th April, I sowed 3 kernals of corn, (Incredible F1 variety), though only two germinated, but my word, they like to please. Watching the corn grow is giving me daily pleasure, and puts me in mind of Jack and his magic beans. I sowed a further dozen kernals exactly 2 weeks ago on 2nd May, all of which germinated, and the largest of which has spurted up 2 inches in the last 24 hours. Awesome! If we are very lucky, we will get to eat home grown corn this year for the first time ever, but even if that doesn’t come about, it will have been such a pleasant distraction.

Wishing you well, and hoping you too will find pleasant things to focus on. We can’t wait until it’s possible to get back together, but as ever the priority for us all right now is staying safe, so we can enjoy the future that this long lockdown was devised to make possible.