Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Feast or famine

Not much time to blog this week, projects are crowding in on me. Friday I'm doing a sift board with Linknet, the Edinburgh charity I help, and then doing the interviews next week. Last year we had no funding and great staff, now we have the funding and the staff have moved on. It's the way of the world in the voluntary sector, always chasing cash, which creates job insecurity for the people involved. I hesitate to mention the project as last time I did I got a flurry of racist spam, as we help young black ethnic minority youngsters.

I'm also getting shots together for the local horticultural show. This year I've been trying to photograph the growers in their gardens before the show - not easy due the very bad summer we've had. This is one of the shots. The show is a week on Saturday.

And I'm trying to book a holiday, again not easy as half the country wants to escape our lousy summer.

A few things I've enjoyed in the last week:

1) The BBC programme on the River Ganges, fantastic photography, and the final part on Bangladesh was really inspiring. Seeing delta farmers watching their land literally topple into the river while they took down their homes to float them off to new pastures was very moving indeed. And I learned a new word, Sunderban - it means "beautiful forest", and describes the mangrove forest on the delta, one of the tiger's last strongholds. I've just come across it again in a poem, by the Bangladeshi poet Rashida Islam, which is also about the river.

2) The Roger Deakin book on trees is still delighting me, he writes a few chapters on Australia, and one part is about a tribe for whom dogs are sacred. The people sleep out at night on raised platforms under tarps and their dogs sleep with them. So they judge the temperature of the night by saying how many dogs they needed to keep warm , eg "it was a two dogs night". I love this, and when Basha comes stays with us I will now call it "a one dog night"!

3) Also heard Ian Paisley Junior on the radio being interviewed as Minister for equality issues in N Ireland. He was asked how he squared his religious beliefs with being responsible for ensuring that gays got equal rights.

He replied saying that he lived in Ulster not Utopia . I do not support his outlook on life, but I think this was a fantasticly honest answer, if only other politicians were as honest!

Which brings me on to Wendy Alexander gaining the leadership of the Labour party here in Scotland. I won't say much on this either, other than to say it is yet another reason that I won't be returning to their fold any time soon. I had the misfortune to be around her at one point in my life and it was one of the lowest times in my career, despite the fact that I actually loved the work that I was trying to do.


Blogger PI said...

Oooooooh do tell. I promise I won't tell Gordon.
And b------s to the racist spam!

10:40 am  
Blogger f:lux said...

Like the prize leek portrait - are you taking the pictures to exhibit at the show?

I heard Ian Paisley Junior on the radio too this week, I forget the name of the programme but it had him taking the presenter around his 'place of peace' which apparently was the family home - though it's hard to imagine growing up with Rev Paisley as being a peaceful experience!

11:42 am  
Blogger apprentice said...

On Wendy just read the press and you'll get the flavour.

F:lux, yes pictures are for the show, just to let people see where the stuff comes from and the care that is taken to grow it.

12:47 pm  
Blogger Cailleach said...

Those leeks are huge. I bet they'd make a tasty stew. That's a great quote from Ian Paisley Junior. and I hope the event works out great, Apprentice.

11:01 am  
Blogger Lucy said...

This is a great post; the leek-man is terrific, and I could easily go and join those dog-adoring aborigines!

1:53 pm  

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