THE BAG LADY: Isn’t it strange ladies how we never forget our handbags, even though we are not always conscious of bringing them home! It’s like having a fifth limb. My Mother was always panicking about her handbag “Where’s my handbag”, she would say [visibly blanching], and although she was a small woman, with multiple health problems, you could barely lift her handbag off the ground. I’m sure, that if pushed, she could have performed open heart surgery from a flap in that handbag .Mind you, don’t we all become just like our mothers [or our fathers?] If I mislay my handbag, all hell breaks lose. “When did you last have it”, my husband will say [well if I knew that it wouldn’t be lost!] but he knows that losing my handbag is like mislaying the crown jewels, and yet. all it contains is a few supermarket bills, a tissue or two, a few mints, some antihistamines a bar of nut chocolate [to stave off hypoglycaemia] a lipstick and a list of people to contact in case of emergency [most of whom would deny all knowledge anyway] and then I have a few [outdated] things which say five pence off petrol [if you buy half the shop] oh, and a novel [must have some escapism in case a lift jams, or there is a traffic hold up]. A handbag can be for some, a portable home .I also keep various- sized plasters in one of the pockets [I do like to feel that I could help anyone flagging at the bus stop!], but where do you draw the line, between being cautious and preparing for an invasion! It’s the nearest we get to being a hero though isn’t it, stepping forward with a plaster, or a wet wipe at the crucial moment. In my next life though, I’m going to be so cool and sophisticated it isn’t true. I shall just have a slim, neat, fiendishly expensive handbag, containing a platinum credit card, a lipstick/mirror combination, oh, and tiny diary [I’ll have to use minute writing though, because it will be full of things in the same ilk as the George Clooney wedding!] It is ridiculous though, all the ‘just in case things’ we carry around to help our fellow man, that fill up our handbags and weigh us down. There’s only one thing for it, I’ve decided. Buy a smaller handbag [this is serious girls, it’s either that or a shoulder replacement!]

HEROES OF THE BUS SHELTER: My goodness, the bus shelter opposite the bell looks splendid doesn’t it? Thank you to Mary Philo, Yvonne Melcalf, Stevie Coleman Morris Metcalf and Richard Jones, who worked hard sprucing it up .They came and went like the ‘Elves And The Shoemaker’, leaving behind a new-looking bus stop. There are good people in this village.

THE SHOP SAYS THANK YOU: Sadly, an Iden resident Frances Kupicha died recently, and bequeathed in her will the sum of three thousand pounds to ‘Iden Village Stores’ .It was willed as ;“To the village stores, to support it’s continuance at the heart of the village”. Geoff, in the village stores, remembers conversing in Polish with Frances, as he knows certain phrases [goodness Geoff!] and was helping Frances re-visit her roots. He and Elizabeth are pleased to announce, that they have bought five new freezers and a new fridge, in memory of Frances. A special lady to remember

A SPECIAL PLACE: Iden W.I.met on Tuesday 9th September in the village hall, for an interesting talk by Heather Chantler, a spokeswoman and guide for the R.S.P.B. on ‘What is. Special about Dungeness.’ Well, Dungeness is quite unique isn’t it, almost like a little land all on it’s own, with flora and fauna that seek out it’s particular aura.

WHY NOT TRY IDEN W.I.: While we are on the subject, it’s always nice to have new W. I. members. I must say I thought it was all “Calendar Girls”, and jam and Jerusalem., but once there at W.I. I found it pleasant to be just a group women folk, with a plethora of shared interest [the men at home must love it too, the chance of a nap, and being in sole charge of the remote!] We are dragged out of a kitchen scenario to join the ranks of ‘Ladies of Iden’, mingling and broadening our horizons [We never discuss broccoli!]. Anyway it would be lovely to welcome new members. We meet in the village hall, at 7.30pm, on the 2nd Tuesday of the month, if anyone would like to give it a try.

A BIRD FANCIER’S DELIGHT: This is the title of the first lecture on the agenda at the Iden And District Natural History Society, to be held in Iden village hall on Friday, 10th October at 7.30 pm . [Member’s subscription fee £14, and visitors pay £3.]

HOLY COMMUNION: There will be a service of Holy Communion in Iden Parish Church, on Sunday 21st September, at 9.30am.

THE GREAT AMERICAN SONG BOOK: Bob Hammond, Dov Perminski and Laura Heales will perform songs for us in Iden Parish Church on Saturday, 27th September at 7.30pm. No entrance fee [retiring collection only] proceeds of which go to Iden Parish Church, and the village hall. Drinks will be available [by donation].There are so many great American songs to choose from, so it should be a lovely evening.

LOOK OUT YOUR JUMBLE: Sue White, would be glad of our jumble [can collect if necessary] No electrical goods. Telephone Sue on [01-797 280453] The jumble sale will be held on Saturday 25th October in the village hall, in aid of Iden Cricket Club, so please do clear out your cupboards.

A SPECIAL MESSAGE FROM PAT: Pat Buckland has asked me to thank whoever left apples on her doorstep, as she was able to share them with members of Magdela House. Day Centre.

THE HARVEST SUPPER: Tickets are on sale in Iden Village Stores, for the harvest supper, to be held in the village hall on Saturday 4TH October [7pm for 7.30]. There is going to be a conjurer this year too.

IDEN VILLAGE FETE A.G.M.: This will be held in the village hall at 7.30pm. on 23rd September.

STRICTLY SPEAKING: Television, has woken up to the fact that we have now packed away the bikinis and flip flops, and are all once, sitting in a line on the settee, passing around the ‘After Eights’, ready to get stuck in to ‘Strictly’, ‘Last Tango in Halifax’, and ‘Scott and Bailey’ [ I love the way those two just retire to the ladies room to sort out their love lives and domestic issues while sitting on a sink.] I wasn’t even going to watch ‘Strictly’, but, one glimpse of sequinned chiffon, and I’m hooked. It’s the would- be romance, and the fake tan, and the fear that even a forty year marriage could bite the dust over a cha cha. Actually those celebrities are brave. It must be a mixed blessing being in the public eye. We mock celebrities sometimes, but imagine being constantly scrutinised, and having to put on a show. When they’re up, they’re up, but how soon we forget them when they throw in a few duff performances. It’s probably better to be Joe ordinary, rather than someone who has to put on eye liner to empty the bin. There is something lovely about just being a regular person, having that ‘fly on the wall’ ability to flit about unperturbed, mingling unnoticed, and yet seeing so much. Nice to be able to eat a sherbert dab too whenever we feel like it, without it getting into the papers!

CONTACT ME: If anyone has anything to add to the village voice, please contact Gill Griffin [Telephone 01-797 280311], and I’ll be glad to include it.

Gill Griffin

Belfield, Main Street