Friday, 18 January 2013

Oh yes we can!

We have had, for us, a very social week with two evening events.

Wednesday was first night for the village pantomime. It was great fun – despite the fact that I could hear not a word even though the hall does have an induction loop system (which was working quite well but my hearing is now rubbish). To see the youngsters – by which I mean the ones between, say, fifteen and twenty in that rather difficult and self-conscious period through which we all have to pass – prancing around the stage, encouraging the audience to join in and generally fooling around in the great pantomime tradition was wonderful. All very life affirming.

The second event was held last night and was the opening of an extension to the village library. This is housed in the old primary school which closed over twelve years ago when a new, and very splendid, school was built just up the road. Thanks to a huge and very well organised community effort, the buildings were bought by the village and are used by all sorts of groups – including the community library filled with donated books and run by a team of volunteers. Libraries have played a huge part in Marcia’s life and she was thrilled when she was asked to open the library just before we moved to the other side of the moor.

She was just as thrilled to be asked to open the extension and, despite the bitter cold with snow in the forecast, a surprisingly large number turned out to come and listen to her. Maybe it was because the village is in pantomime mode but, whatever the cause, the hall was constantly echoing to the sound of laughter as Marcia talked about the strange world of the novelist. After a brisk question and answer session – and a lot more laughter – Marcia cut the ribbon and as many as could squeeze into the library posed for a group photograph.

Photographs by Brian Dent
While we were asleep, it snowed. We both retain a somewhat childish approach to snow and so it was with a high level of excitement that I pulled back the bedroom curtains. I was not disappointed – the snow covered roof scape with the south Devon countryside in the background was as delightful as I had hoped. Obviously different from the snowy views from our other homes (as you can see from the photographs) it has a charm and beauty of its own. 
The view looking over Dartmoor from our house in mid-Devon . . . 

. . . and from the sitting room of our cottage on Exmoor.

If the visibility had been better - much better - you would have seen
Ugborough Beacon in the background.

One huge plus: where we were, the snow created total isolation which could be quite frightening whilst in this village, where we know so many of those whose snow covered roofs we can see, that is replaced by a great sense of companionship which is extremely comforting.