TALES OF THE RIVER BANK: This week, I went shopping for maggots [I’ve shopped for nicer things], because my grandson was staying, and we went fishing. They may colour them red, white and blue, but they are still maggots, and you don’t really know where they’ve been!. Anyway, I sat by the riverbank, two days running, watching them catch fish and carefully remove the hooks and put them back in the water’, and it reminded me of when Johnnie Morris used to do ‘Tales Of The Riverbank’[remember that?] and it was so relaxing just watching the ripples on the river, sheltered overhead by a Hawthorn tree. I set up home there at New Bridge, with a couple of chairs, a flask of coffee, a picnic , a book and a kind of washing area with baby wipes and a little bowl, soap and hot water. My husband said “Gill what are you doing, we’re trying to fish here.” You see, he would put maggots on the line and then eat a sandwich without batting an eyelid., but in my opinion, a little anti-bacterial hand wash wouldn’t go amiss. I wonder how Ray Mears handles his post-catch ablutions.

COFFEE MORNING AT THE VILLAGE HALL: There will be a coffee morning at the village hall, in aid of village hall funds, on Saturday 8th November, at 10.30am. There will be cakes and bric a brac for sale. Donations of cakes and bric a brac would be gratefully received. You can bring them to the hall by 9am on that day.

THE SERVICE OF HOLY COMMUNION: There will be a service of Holy Communion at 9.30 am on Sunday 2nd November, at Iden Parish Church.

SHORT MAT BOWLS: Anyone who would like to join in short mat bowls on Wednesday afternoons in the village hall, 2pm-4pm, would be very welcome, whether or not you have played before .Refreshments are served, and it is good exercise. If you wish to join, please contact Teresa Parsons [telephone-01797-280143]

THE POP-IN: The next Pop-In will be in Iden village hall on Monday 10th November at 11am.

BINGO: Bingo will be held in Iden village hall on Thursday 13th November. Doors open at 2pm, eyes down at 2.30pm.Everyone from Iden and surrounding villages is welcome. Tea, including sandwiches and cake, is only a pound, and the afternoon is great fun.

AUDITIONS FOR THE PANTOMIME: There is untapped talent lurking in this village. People who profess to be shy and retiring, may have no inkling of their thespian capabilities. Think of all the wonderful thespians who started life in the humblest of situations, hiding behind their mother’s skirts, and are now basking in the spotlight at the ‘Barbican’. So-----Get out there! .Practice enunciating something in front of the bedroom mirror, and while the mood is upon you, rush off to the village hall in full flow and audition. Bob Hammond will love your soliloquy [he’s very approachable] Auditions are on Sunday 7th December at 2.30 in Iden village hall .The Pantomime is ‘Alibaba And The Forty Thieves’, which is a date for the diary. Performances are on 20th, and 21st March [It’s more than likely oozing with gold lame!]

80 HAPPY FAMILIES AT CHRISTMAS TIME: ‘The Shoe Box Appeal’ has collected 80 boxes from Iden /Playden, from our schools and churches, and kind people who have just left their boxes on Sue Cavilla’s doorstep. Sue was most grateful, and she deserves a big thank you too for organising the appeal in our area. So little from our point of view, means a happier Christmas for the less fortunate. Thank you everyone who contributed.

JUMBLE SALE SUCCESS: Rob Cloute, the president of Iden Cricket Club, would like to thank Sue White and all the helpers at last Saturday’s jumble sale in the village hall, in aid of the cricket club. £600 was made, which will greatly boost their funds.

WASPS IN THE ATTIC: It was a no- brainer, but after noticing droves of sleepy wasps sharing our home, I decided that we had a wasp nest somewhere, which turned out to be the attic. We have dead wasps here and there, which is sad, but they can just as easily reciprocate by instigating anaphylaxis in some people, so maybe we are even –stevens. Nature is a cruel beast. Apparently, [so I’ve been told] you can get a synthetic wasp nest, once you’ve got rid of the real one, which should prevent re-infestation.[though I’m no expert] After I’ve written this village voice though , I’m going to look up ‘wasps’, and find out more about them. . [it’s just the same as, reading a character reference , as you would when any strangers decide to take up lodging in your home!]

TOO MANY SPROUTS: This week I did a little Christmas shopping, and as always I have a ‘show and tell session’. I get out what I’ve bought to show my husband. “Look, I said, I’ve bought this for Dave”—“Dave who”, he said. “I thought we weren’t buying for them” he said. [that’s news to me because I’ve just bought the Dave in question a lovely jumper., and he is family] I have to say, that like most women Christmas is mostly my department. My husband’s contribution is the potatoes and sprouts, and it’s like a military operation. Firstly, he goes into how many sprouts we should each have. “I’m upping it to nine this year” he said last year [nine sprouts each, good grief!] Then he’ll say “what pot should I use [one the size of the Titanic I should think, because there are ten of us.] He then wants a knife and a board, brought to him. “I’m not putting a cross in them this year, he decided. “The kids won’t eat nine sprouts”, I said [in truth, it’s hard enough getting them to eat one] “Last year I did seven, but I don’t think it was enough”, he continued. “How do you want these potatoes cut”, [ he says this every year, even after 45 years] By this time, I’m losing the will to live, and eying up the Christmas cake brandy .However, Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without the sprout fiasco, and good old Dave is going to love his jumper!

CONTACT ME: If anyone has anything to add to the village voice, please contact Gill Griffin [telephone 01797-280311], and I’ll be glad to include it.

Gill Griffin

Belfield, Main Street