WHAT’s HAPPENED TO ALL THE COWBOYS?: I love a good western, but the last good one I saw was ‘Open Range’ with Kevin Costner and Robert Duvall. In spite of all its shoot-outs, and cowboys lining the bar drinking whiskey shots at the rate of knots, there is a gentle charm about old cowboy films. People gathered with prairie flowers to sing the two hymns synonymous with cowboy films ‘Rock of Ages Cleft for Me, ’and ‘ We will gather at the River’. I would love to have spent my time in a log cabin doling out fried chicken and grits to a bunch of cow hands. My Canadian granny once lived in Saskatchewan .She remembered covered wagons, and as a child her home was visited by native Indians who knew her father. [that’s true]. Cowboy films remind me of the quaint gold mining town I grew up in. If you’ve lived in two countries you become a product of both. I remember a man in the town who was married to an Indian squaw, and my mum came over from Fulham, England, to be greeted by native Indians gathered around the railway tracks, full of curiosity to see who was new in town. Quentin Tarrantino makes violent westerns now and again, but I long for the gentler, plodding kind, cowboys sleeping under the stars after a meal of beans, keeping one eye open for an Indian attack. I enjoy spaghetti westerns, and I loved ‘Rawhide’, ‘Wagon Train’ and ‘Gun Smoke’] I don’t want overtly bloody or political westerns, just the simple kind where the good guys got even with the bad guys, making the town safe for a while, so the women could get on with their quilting and the cowboys could go on branding their steers and take a nap in the barn!
MORE NEWS TO FOLLOW REGARDING IDEN FETE: At the last Iden Fete Committee meeting this week, nothing more was decided, apart from the fact that there is to be a large boot fair on the last Saturday in July, in Iden’s playing field. Another meeting is planned for 11th March to finalise exactly what the fete will comprise. There are not enough committee members or helpers to deal with a fete of our usual scale. There will be teas in the pavilion and burgers as usual.
A SERVICE OF HOLY COMMUNION: There will be a family service in Iden Parish Church on Sunday. Following the service of Holy Communion, teas and coffees will be served in the Old Hall.
THE IDEN AND DISTRICT NATURAL HISTORY SOCIETY: The Natural History Society meetings are a very popular even and seem to draw more spectators than any other meeting in Iden. On Friday, 8th March, in Iden Village Hall, there is a lecture given by Sue Buckingham, entitled ‘A Little Botany’ [part 2] All are welcome, and visitors pay £3.
PLAYTIME FOR THE LITTLE ONES: There is playtime and fun for pre -school- age children in the Old Hall in Iden [by the church] . Mums and carers and little ones can have fun together from 10.30am-12 noon, every Wednesday morning. All are welcome.
THE PARISH COUNCIL A.G.M.: There will be a normal Parish Council meeting on Tuesday 5th March, at 7.30pm, in Iden Village Hall, after which is the A.G.M, an opportune moment for villagers to question the council, and provide their own queries. Everyone is welcome to a meeting which will lay bare council plans, and give us a chance to hear comments from Rother and East Sussex councillors. The A.G.M begins at 8pm.
IMAGINATION: When I was a child, I would put on one of my mum’s long dresses, sit in front of a mirror with a bit of rolled-up newspaper [as a cigarette], and pretend to be a sleazy blonde! I’d yell things to a line of dolls like “I cannot go on this way”, or “ You children are driving me to distraction, just you wait until your father gets home”. My dolls were either dying of consumption or getting the wrath of my tongue for stealing lipsticks from Woolworths [there was always some drama involved]. Nowadays, everything is laid on for kids. Instant entertainment leaves no room to explore the magical kingdom of imagination. This week I gathered my grandchildren to the window sill. “ What are these?”, I asked. None of them knew what catkins were. Good grief, ”I said, “ On the way home make sure you look for them on the trees .” [they looked at me as though I’d lost the plot]. So much of our childhood was spent picking berries or gathering bits of hedgerow for a vase wasn’t it, but then again, their technical knowledge is to be admired. Since creation, life has evolved with such different priorities hasn’t it, and it’s all down to necessity and progress. There is still a whole wealth of untapped knowledge and invention. One day even our techno-wizard grandchildren will be bowed by advancement, and their brains like mine will shut up shop and be happy with the little bit of knowledge they’ve accrued!
CONTACT ME: If anyone has anything to add to the Village Voice, please ring Gill Griffin [telephone 01797 280311]