As if this blog was not enough literary exercise for me I’ve now started writing my memoir – or autobiography as it used to be called. This will not necessarily be for publication but as a record of my life for my family’s benefit.
It’s going well with over 300 pages of raw memories so far. I don’t know about you but I remember the past as a series of little events each of which can be described as a story. That’s the way I’m putting this together and what’s making it possible is using the right tools. The main work-horse is the Scrivener program, used by a number of professional writers, which allows me to write these stories as separate pieces and then drag and drop them around into some sort of order. Highly recommended for any long-form writing. One of the delightful side effects of this work is that one memory leads to another so I’m reliving many events from my youth that I thought I’d forgotten completely.
I’ve also visited several old friends. One was a girl I last saw when I was 5 and other a man I last saw when I was 17. And amazingly in both cases we instantly bonded and we all said it felt as though all the years had simply melted away.
Life is good. I’m back in residence in Wing, although without Judith for a few weeks. I returned alone so that I could attend a reunion of my old IBM Education colleagues in Windsor. It was so good to see that so many were alive and well but, of course, after 30 years, several were no longer with us.
It was a gorgeous spring day when I drove from Wing to Windsor and the sun, flowers and England’s green and pleasant land forced my jet lag into submission. Windsor was beautiful in the sun and was made even more festive by the flag-waving crowds. I thought initially it was to welcome us IBMers but then I saw Her Majesty drive past waving so I suspect that was probably the reason for the bunting. She must have remembered me from her trip to Corby because as she drove past she looked straight at me and waved, just like last time.
The remembered that the IBM event was to be held in the same hotel as the 20th reunion so I strode up – well staggered up, with my knee troubles – to the hotel entrance only to be faced with a name and facade that I didn’t recognise. Of course now I’m back in England I am relaxed, carrying nothing with but my driving license and simple phone. In the US I carry passport, Green Card, Nexus Card, Smart Phone and laptop just in case I get stopped by Homeland Security and have to prove who I am and what I am doing in their country… which I have had to do several times.
Had I been in the US I would have used my Smart Phone to check my email for the exact address of the event, but I was naked. I spied a Starbucks a few yards away so I set off there to use one of their computers but, alas, unlike in the US there was no public access computer and, looking around the place there was only one person with a computer.
This lady, of more mature years, looked at me with some trepidation as I approached her in the near-empty cafe. This turned to a look of abject terror as I misjudged my opening remarks by saying, “Excuse me, I’m not an axe murderer, but…”. However, once I explained my situation she allowed me to use her computer to check my email to get the definitive address for the hotel. I thanked her and headed back up the hill looking for the building numbers until I reached the same hotel as I had gone to before. Same address, different name and facade! Well I am nearly 70
After a long illness Tony died peacefully in his bed on 1st October, 2012, surrounded by Sheila, his family and friends. He will be missed for many reasons, not least for his sense of humour right up until the end.
Tony loved Wing and its people and the number of visitors he had in his final months proved to us all that his love was reciprocated by the community.
His funeral was held in St Peter and St Paul Church, Wing on 10th October, 2012.
Both his son, Nigel, and his sister, Sandra, read eulogies.
Saturday August 18th 2012 will go down in the history of Wing as one of THE social events of the year as we all gathered together in the Village Hall to celebrate the 70th birthday of one of our most famous residents, Paul Brewer. His popularity can be judged by the fact that nearly 100 people turned up, from as far away as Wing, Bucks, Birmingham and even Germany!
We all had a fantastic evening, with great food provided by an army of Paul’s female admirers under the leadership of Jeanette and Judith.
After a full evening of fun and entertainment the party ended by everyone adjourning to the car park and surrounds as someone ( we know not who) had decided to celebrate by setting off one or two fireworks.
(During the preparation and execution of the event no animals were injured or harmed – although Twiglet did complain about being ignored by her Mum for most of the day.)
Because of several incidents that caused concern and which were reflected in a petition signed by 85 Wing residents, Wing Parish Council has been working for several months on the issue of traffic calming through the village. Having consulted with Rutland County Council (RCC) (who need both to agree and to implement/maintain any plan on which we decide), we have been advised that we must consult you again on the best way ahead.
From your previous replies, we understand that the majority (of those who replied) are in favour of some form of vertical obstruction (which is the most effective measure); the only other ‘do something’ option is to go for the Speed Indicating Devices (SID) but these are not only more expensive but also generally less effective in lowering average speeds. RCC have advised that we must put the vote to you. You could choose to do nothing, however your Parish Council feels that something should be done, and that the best option is to go for the ‘speed bumps’, coupled with a marked ‘chicane’ (i.e. lines indicating a single carriageway) in front of the Church which would further slow traffic there.
Attached is a map showing where the proposed bumps would be would be situated (please note that they must be, by law, be lit at night ( our plan uses existing lighting) and (b) be more than 10m from any residence so as to minimize noise nuisance). Also attached a pictures showing both the ‘bumps’ for we might opt (shown are the ones on the estate inside the Oakham bypass), and the Manton SID.
Use the voting paper that has been delivered to your door to register your vote.
This is what we are voting on.
The recommended positions for the bumps are as in the map below: