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Monday, June 11, 2012

Every living thing

--------As the cloud shadows, racing on the wind, flew over me, trailing ribbons and brightness over the endless browns and greens, I felt a rising exhilaration at just being up there on the roof of Yorkshire. It was an empty landscape where no creature stirred and it was silent except for the cry of distant bird, yet, I felt a further surge of excitement in the solitude, a tingling sense of the nearness of all creation.-------

James Herriot was in touch with his world. Last month I read- Vet in a Spin and Every living thing. He was a vet, but he didn’t simply go about with his medical bag oblivious of the world around him. So as I read about helping lambs give birth, or fixing lame dogs, and clearing off rot in horses, I wish I lived earlier, I would have made an effort to reach him.
Chad Kruger is alive and I haven’t emailed him yet, and the’re three letters to Maeve Binchy which I need to send out. Time.

-----‘Have you felt inside her?’
Nay, I haven’t had time.’ He turned harassed eyes towards me
We are behind with the milkin’ this morning. We can’t be late for t’milk man.’
I knew what he meant. The drivers who collected the churns for the big dairy companies were a fierce body of men. Probably kind husbands and fathers at normal times but subject to violent outbursts of rage if they were kept waiting even for an instant. I couldn’t blame them, because they had a lot of territory to cover and many farms to visit, but I had seen them when provoked and their anger was frightening to behold----
I can relate to this. My uncle has to get up at bizarre hours just so not to upset the milk man, he sells a litre for 25 Shillings to the society. Half a litre of the same when packed is Ksh 50. So we tell him to take a risk and move to Brookside but, what will happen when Brookside decides to take less he wonders.
------------She was of the farming generation which had come through the tough times before the war and her gaunt, slightly bowed frame and lined face bore testimony to the hard years. It was the kind of face I had seen on so many of the old Yorkshire folk-grim, but kindly.----------
Reading that paragraph lists faces in my mind that would fit that description. Years of hard, tiring work have lined their faces and roughed their palms.

…….Afterwards we walked through the scented silence of the woods,

The pine needles soft under our feet, and he talked, not only about the deer, but about the other wild creatures of the forest and about the plants and flowers which flourished in those secret places. He seemed to know it all and I began to understand the depths of the interest which colored his entire life. He held the key to a magic world.
As we reached the field the sun came out and, looking back, I could see long drifts of bluebells among the dark holes of the trees, and in the glades, where the first ray struck through the branches, the primroses and anemones shone like scattered jewels…….

Yep, that’s James Herriot for you.

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