Hello again everyone, I had a great time on holiday with my wife the week starting Easter bank holiday in Norfolk, for the first time we decided to let the kids stay at home and fend for themselves while we got away for a few days. Our kids are eighteen and seventeen years old so we knew there wouldn’t be any real crisis leaving them on their own; and they had some friends come around so they weren’t too lonely. And we had a good time too, so it’s all good.
As is usual when we ever go away, or even shopping in another town, one of our major passions is looking round charity shops, my wife seeks out clothing, footwear and bag bargains. There are a lot of items reasonably priced and usually of good quality, many items fall under the heading of ‘bric-a-brac’ too (where does that phrase come from?) but we usually leave them well alone.
Whenever we enter a shop and my wife has busied herself with the clothes racks, I head for the back of the shop where the books are usually waiting for me. I don’t take every book I see, I peruse each shelf and read practically every title to see if anything strikes a chord in my mental list of what I’m looking for.
Well, this week, among a few other titles that I’ve made my own were two worthy of note. The first one even surprised me as I opened the first page to read a few lines; I was instantly drawn in to the story and bought it without a moment’s hesitation.
The book is called ‘Button Jugs’ by Joan Margaret Fleming and was published in 1947. It’s a quaint story of a young girl and her adventures when she is left a country cottage in the will of an obscure relative. I will say no more, you will have to source a copy for yourself and have a very enjoyable read. I do believe Mrs Fleming wrote other titles and maybe if I come across them in my charity shop safaris I will buy more. I believe, thanks to further investigation that Mrs Fleming died in 1980, I am happier to have read her story, knowing I may be the first one to read this particular story for some time, her exploits live on…
She may not have found world wide fame, but she has made another reader content that he bothered to open the first page in the first place.
Joan Margaret Fleming… I thank you.
The second book is a little gem; I did once borrow this book from my local library on the recommendation of Mr Lyons, so I was more than pleased to find this one in my charity shop wanderings.
It’s called ‘Eats, Shoots and Leaves’ by Lynne Truss; and of course it is about punctuation, or rather, trying to eradicate bad punctuation. It is a great read for all those would-be authors who aren’t sure… about anything regarding the humble comma, full stops. Or semi-colons; even ellipsis… (See what I did there eh?)
It is a serious look at the problems we all face with our wonderful English language and it does make you sit (or lie down in a darkened room) and think, but in a light- hearted way; I would recommend getting a copy to anyone.
And of course, on holiday I was able to indulge in another passion of mine; right next to our caravan park was the wonderful remains of Burgh Castle, it’s really an ancient Roman Cavalry fort, but it makes no difference what it’s called. I could walk around it all day wondering about the men who put each stone I touch in its place 1700 years ago. Some of the walls have collapsed over the years, there are information boards that mention the fact that the site was also used as a Saxon burial ground, there could have been a monastery on the site, and even a Norman ‘motte and bailey’ castle. The place is steeped in history; I wonder if anyone has been brave enough to sleep on the site in recent years…
Well, I read ‘button jugs’ on holiday, I still have to read Lynne Truss’s offering again, and a few other books besides, oh, and I’m still writing other stories too. Never a dull moment!
Bye for now!