TROLLY DOLLY: One of my favourite things is having fleeting ownership of a supermarket trolley. It's a sad '˜Old Mother Hubbard' feeling to be left with half a wilted lettuce and a hard nubbin of cheese I couldn't cut with a chainsaw. A full larder does gladden the heart. When I was first married, my husband would meet me from work and we would peruse the supermarket shelves together and spend all of £5 on our entire shop. I had the daft idea that the weekly shop meant as much to him as it did to me, until he began to yell out 'right Gill come on, lets get this over with, do you want sugar, bread, flour', chivvying me along as bored as a badger. My heart sank. [Who was this man I'd married who could suddenly become so flippant about romancing essential commodities?] Now I shop alone , just me and my list and spend ages thinking out what the cat would like for a change, what to put in the '˜stash bin' for the grandchildren, and what spares I need should there be any kind of famine or invasion. These days we practically need a PHD in choosing pizza don't we? There are so many types of everything [a person could have a panic attack selecting gravy granules.] For a whole week we'll live in the land of plenty until once more faced with that nubbin of hard cheese. This week I bought a pumpkin for two pounds, not to eat, but to sit on the window sill next to some flowers. Purely decorative. A waste of money? Certainly not, I love it. It's so delightfully orange!

Friday, 12th October 2018, 9:28 am
Updated Friday, 12th October 2018, 9:29 am

IDEN PARISH COUNCIL MEETING: Last Tuesdays meeting in Iden village hall was chaired by Ray Griffin, who announced that between the Bowls Club Macmillan tea party, and ‘ The Bell’s’ coffee morning, approximately one thousand pounds was raised, which was great. Keith Glazier, chairman of East Sussex Council was waiting to hear the outcome of the budget allocated to adult social care. Questions were asked in the audience about the proposed development of houses at the back of Elmsmead, as a consultation period is imminent. Councillor Paul Osbourne from Rother District Council could only advise that the principle of housing development is to choose the most suitable site and choosing one site over the other is understandably always very personal to those in surrounding houses. Our Parish clerk Mary Philo announced that the fee is now due for the council’s use of the village hall. We are awaiting a new waste bin by the bus stop opposite The Bell. Grass cutting fees, and the number of cuts were discussed. Keith Glazier said that the council will cut more prolifically if there is a question of safety, but not just for aesthetic reasons. Councillor Michael Miller brought up the number of mole hills in the park, which are a constant problem. The question of more playground equipment arose, and it was suggested that some child/adult features might help the elderly to exercise. This however is subject to cost and is why the equipment’s purchase is still in the pipeline. Michael also stressed that Christopher Strangeway’s orchard is out of bounds to villagers hoping to pick fruit. Picking fruit never had been offered under village tenure. The fruit is now being picked by a contractor and picking Christopher’s fruit will now be considered a trespass. Parish Council meetings are ostensibly a village affair, but it’s always good to have our District Councillors at the meetings to exchange concerns and keep us abreast of happenings in East Sussex. I must say the Councillors always arrive in such good humour, ready for reciprocal discussion. The next meeting is in Iden village hall at 7.30pm on Tuesday 6th November.

IDEN NATURAL HISTORY SOCIETY: The first winter lecture of the Natural History Society begins tonight in Iden village hall, with a talk from Brian Gallop entitled ‘April In Turkey. The lectures are of high standard and cover natural aspects of Britain and abroad. Visitors pay £3, and there is an annual subscription fee of a minimum of £14. All are welcome tonight at 7.30pm.

QUIZ NIGHT AND FISH AND CHIPS: I hope you managed to procure tickets for this Saturday’s quiz and fish and chip supper in Iden village hall [6pm for 6.30 start]. It should be a fun night, and a good old prod for the brain cells!

A SERVICE OF HOLY COMMUNION: There is a Service of Holy Communion this Sunday in Iden Parish Church at 9.30am.

A SKIFFLE BAND, AND BACON BUTTIES AND BEANS: On Friday 19th October, there is an evening of music [from the Fieldstone Boys] and a bacon butty and bean supper followed by apple pie and custard. It will be held in Tilling Green Community Centre TN31 7BE. It’s a bargain at £7.50 per head and is in aid of ‘The Rye and District Dementia Action Alliance’, a very worthy cause. For tickets, please ring Daliea on 07737350896.It sounds pretty sumptuous!

A LITTLE TOO POIGNANT: I never cook a ham at Christmas without thinking of the book, ‘Great Expectations’, where Pip sneaks off onto the moors with his sister’s precious Christmas ham. The relationship between Pip and Joe Gargery is very poignant, especially when Pip goes up in the world and becomes ashamed of Joe, who still says, “Ever the best of friends ain’t us Pip old chap in his innocent way’. A bit of old lace will take me back to Miss Havisham’s wedding dress, and sometimes my own cobwebs transfer to Miss Havisham’s prolific strands’. There is so much morality in Dickens, and so many passages in all his books that stay in the mind’s eye. life doesn’t really change does it, there is still a sad division between the haves and the have-nots. Anyway, I think I would choose Great Expectations as my book if I was a guest on ‘Desert Island Discs’ because it’s long and graphic. Mind you, I think for my object I’d choose all ten series of the popular series Friends’, because they are daft and cheery and modern. Too much poignancy would only make me cry and I might just choke on a coconut!

CONTACT ME: If anyone has anything to add to the Village Voice, please ring Gill Griffin [telephone 01797 280311]