Sunday, 14 June 2009


Yesterday we went to what I always think of as a typically English event, a summer fete. An event that was attended by all ages, shapes, sizes, and creeds proving to me that England is still uniquely alive and well and living in Nottingham. I sometimes become jaded thinking that everything about this Country is slowly sliding downhill, when along comes a little gem like this to thankfully prove me wrong.

And the icing on the cake was that one of our esteemed and talented grandsons was singing with his band Buff Orpington. Their “slot” was sandwiched between a very elderly lady singing a medley of show songs followed by a mad rendition of a Stanley Holloway monologue “The Return of Albert" comes back.htm and them came a very funny guy reciting his own poetry. Only in England!

This "Englishness" reminds me of the time OG and I were in a small village church in Surrey one Armistice Day Sunday. The place was filled with “old soldiers” prouding displaying their medals. In the middle of the service, when the congregation was at full throttle singing a rousing hymn, one of these good old boys started breathing very hard and began tilting to one side.

The service continued unabated whilst the man behind him very carefully moved his chair and gently caught him as he slithered toward the floor.

The service continued, with the vicar giving his sermon while the man continued to writhe on the floor making strange sounds. A while late, with the service still in full swing, two ambulance men trotted in with a stretcher, lifted him on to it and took him away. OG, being Scottish and quite volatile himself, is always very bemused but nevertheless impressed with this extreme form of English stoicism. He leant toward me and whispered in amazement “I suppose this is what makes England great”.

The next week the vicar was happy to announce that the gentleman had recovered. Only in England!

And finally …. the gene pool could use a little chlorine

Originally uploaded by anninfotel

Originally uploaded by anninfotel

Originally uploaded by anninfotel

Originally uploaded by anninfotel

Originally uploaded by anninfotel

Originally uploaded by anninfotel


Anonymous said...

Yay, love summer fetes! They're in full swing round here too :D

Maggie May said...

Yes....... nothing like a summer fete! They are springing up all over the place!
Yes, I have also been to Church services like that, where someone has keeled over & the service has gone on while ambulances are called & emergency procedures are in operation.
Only in England!

Good to see your family!

Strawberry Jam Anne said...

Summer fetes and Armistice Services are part of what makes Britain Great! A x

DogLover said...

Yes, yes, but why all the photos? Who are they of? And what is Fotel that you are evidently In?

And what is Flickr?

Your readers need this sort of information. Or anyway I do!

Retiredandcrazy said...

Nothing quite like it is there D?

Retiredandcrazy said...

We are certainly an odd bunch aren't we Maggie, and long may we remain so.

Retiredandcrazy said...

Actually Anne, I think that the summer fete is parculiarly English isn't it? I know that Scotland has highland games but I can't remember a fete.

Retiredandcrazy said...

Ah, you home in on my vulnerability again DogLover. As I was leaving the house I remembered that my camera was still on charge. "Not to worry" I thought "Sara will have her's". Not. Her camera battery was low too! Would you belive that? So the photographs were taken on my BlackBerry and uploaded to the blog via a site called flicker.

This is quite a long story actually. Uploading photographs from the BlackBerry used to be a doddle, but they changed the procedure and now it's a nightmare. So I spent time yesterday afternoon trying to get it right and then thought "To hell with this, life is too short to stuff a mushroom" and went for a power nap.

Now I have lost the will to live with it. Not only are the photographs crap as usual but I can't be bothered to manipulate and name them.

Suffice to say the first two scallywags are Elise and Sebastien, my greatgrandaughter and grandson,the next two photographs are grandsons Ali and Frazer (the musician), the next is Frazer, the next is the stage on which is standing the strange lady lady who sang songs from the shows and the last is my daughter Sara.

Have a good day y'll!

Stinking Billy said...

Hi, I'm back on the treadmill. Can I still use your Reader? ;-) x

jay said...

Oh yes, very English!

It reminds me of the time I was sitting in a Quaker Meeting (our equivalent of the church service) when one old gentleman started to snore. A few of us gently smiled, thinking he was falling asleep, but like your old soldier, he began to tilt and slide. There was a doctor present and she quietly moved to his side, and spoke briefly and very quietly to his neighbour, who supported him while she went out to her car, and fetched her bag. She took his blood pressure and treated him right there, having lowered him safely to the floor.

The Meeting continued to its conclusion in our usual silence while the afflicted one came round and was helped out to a side room to recover.

Only in England? Well, maybe, but I have a suspicion that the American Quakers would have handled it in a very similar way.

I'm glad the old soldier was fine!

Retiredandcrazy said...

Welcome back Billy, of course you can use my reader, be my guest.

Retiredandcrazy said...

Now Jay, I didn't put you down as being a Quaker. OG and I have often thought of going to a meeting. We are attracted to their way of doing things.

Anonymous said...

I could have guessed who were in the photos,and Doglover asked the question before me, so thank you, Doglover, now I know who are in the photos. I love the photos and was almost right at my guesses except Ali..and I would have guessed Frazer but was not sure. Sara was no problem. She's hasn't changed. Flagmaker

DogLover said...

That was a pleasure, Anonymous. But do you notice that R&C has not told us what Fotel is (as in "Uploaded by Anninfotel")? I reckon it's one of these shadowy associations of the very rich that have got our world (that's yours and mine) tied up - like the Bilderberg Group (Google it if you don't already know about it). Very mysterious, very sinister and very worrying ...

But keep this to yourself - they know where we live ...

Grit said...

and nottm! i'm a nottm girl! must be where all that love for english eccentricities comes from!

aims said...

I'm pretty sure everything would come to a full stop if something like that happened in church here.

Of course - I'd have to attend first to know if that was true or not. It has been some - oh - 30 years or so since I did so. ahem...

Retiredandcrazy said...

Hi Flagmaker, Sara hasn't changed for years has she?

Retiredandcrazy said...

Well DogLover,I would tell you what fotel means but then I would have to kill you.

Retiredandcrazy said...

All I know grit is that my SatNav lady goes mad in Nottingham.

Retiredandcrazy said...

Ahem indeed aims. Shame on you. But I'm not far behind, I guess it has to be at least 10 years since I last at church.